Anne Dorval and Antoine Olivier Pilon in “Mommy" at the Figge Art Museum -- April 18.

Thursday, April 18, 6:30 p.m.

Figge Art Museum, 225 West Second Street, Davenport IA

A Cannes Film Festival Jury Prize recipient that was also nominated for prestigious Palme d’Or, and the French Cesar Award winner for Best Foreign Film, French-Canadian director Xavier Dolan's Mommy enjoys a special April 18 screening as part of the Figge Art Museum's Free Film at the Figge series, the drama lauded by the Montreal Gazette as "an ode to the strength of tough working-class single mothers everywhere."

In Mommy's fictional outcome for the 2015 Canadian federal election, a political party comes to power and establishes a law known as S-14. This legislation allows parents of troubled children and limited finances to place their children in hospitals, without regard for fundamental justice. As the film begins, Diane "Die" Després, a widowed mother and 46-year-old advice columnist, picks up her son Steve from an institution. Steve, who has ADHD and an attachment disorder, was being discharged after starting a fire in which another youth was injured. Die brings Steve to their new home in Saint-Hubert and struggles to care for him under financial distress. But when Steve gives her a cart full of groceries and a necklace reading "Mommy," Die suspects that he has stolen the items, and what follows is an affecting, funny, occasionally harrowing work in which Die struggles to control her son's behavior in a desperate attempt to avoid seeing him institutionalized.

Directed, written, and edited by then 25-year-old Dolan, Mommy was the filmmaker's fifth title to compete at Cannes (where it received a 13-minute standing ovation), and he was merely 20 years old when his first film, 2009's I Killed My Mother, won four awards at Cannes. Mommy subsequently became a critical and financial success, grossing more than $13 million worldwide, and the work went on to win numerous other awards, among them nine Canadian Screen Awards including Best Motion Picture. Among the drama's numerous raves, Peter Howell of the Toronto Star gave Mommy four stars, saying its smartphone-style picture made it timely and concluding it was "one of the best movies of the year, period." Peter Debruge of Variety called it "A funny, heartbreaking and, above all, original work." And The Guardian reviewer Peter Bradshaw described Mommy as "a splashy, transgressive treat, from trailer-trash chat to unexpected sex and surprising emotional depth."

Mommy will be screened in Davenport's John Deere Auditorium on April 18, admission to the 6:30 p.m. showing is free, and more information is available by calling (563)326-7804 and visiting

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