September 01, 2005

Brother's Story in New Film

New Film out of Canada on Brother's Schizophrenia

In Montreal, Canada (at the Montreal World Film Festival) a new film is being released about one man's brother's experience with schizophrenia. The film is called "The Beggars Description". See below for a full description of the film, and links to more information. The film is available in North America via the National Film Board (click here for information).


The Montreal Gazette reported, in a story titled "Immortalizing a brother's beautiful mind"

"Even in a city top-heavy with eccentric characters, Philip Tetrault stands out. He is a poet, painter and master of the pan flute. He is a friend to the famous and the infamous. He has lived among the well-heeled and the hobos. He is also a diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia.

Few know more about the highs and lows of Philip Tetrault's existence than his brother Pierre. A playwright, actor and stage director, Pierre was determined to document Philip's life on screen. And Philip was not about to entrust that job to anyone other than his brother. So Pierre switched media focus and makes his film debut with Philip's saga, This Beggar's Description, which marks its premiere Tuesday at the Montreal World Film Festival."

The reporter adds that:

"Because the subject matter is so intensely personal, Pierre admits it was difficult to chronicle his brother's harrowing odyssey, an unending round trip to hell and back. Yet he has deftly captured many of the loose ends in Philip's life. Painful, yes, but also a passionate and whimsical tale of the artist as a tortured man."


Its reported that "The documentary's most stirring moments feature the three most influential women in Philip's life: his mother, the mother of his daughter and his daughter, all of who have shown unwavering support for the man. The footage depicting Philip's conflicted daughter is particularly poignant."


As for his turn on screen, Philip concedes it is difficult to watch himself. "I realize that I'm exposing myself to the world, but in the process I've purged myself from so much that I have been hiding all these years."

So where does Philip go from here? He doesn't hesitate to respond: "Bifteck, Copacabana, Elsa's - I'll work my way down the bars of the street," he muses. "Then I'll hop into my Cessna and head for the south of France. Or maybe Florida. I'm not sure. And if not, well, maybe I'll continue writing my poems, painting and playing the pan flute every Sunday at church."

This Beggar's Description is being screened as part of the Montreal World Film Festival Tuesday at 8 p.m. and Friday at 11:30 a.m. at the Cinematheque Quebecoise.

The Beggers Description (link at the Montreal Film Festival)

English Translation of "The Beggers Desription" via Google

Source: Montreal Gazette


I would like to vieew this film!

I live in Montreal and I would like to know where I can see it either in French (English subtitles) or in English...

Posted by: Paula at October 10, 2005 01:22 PM

my brother also has this heartbreaking disease, and my prayers and thoughts go out to you and your family. its nice to know that we are not alone, and its talked about and more and more treatment is taking place.

Posted by: michelle at November 25, 2005 09:38 AM

Can I get the film in VHS?

Posted by: john pare at December 21, 2005 03:38 PM

Daughter Susan Pare referred this to me - and we're all anxious to see it.

Posted by: john pare at December 21, 2005 04:06 PM

I work with schizophrenia - can i get this film in the united states?


Posted by: karen at April 19, 2006 05:16 PM

Philip Tetrault is like an old guitar that NEVER needs tuning.

Posted by: b.kin at February 20, 2007 10:00 PM

I saw the film and it is a poignant story of one remarkable man. Really well done. Where can we get Phil's published collection of poems? I would like to read more of his poetry.

Posted by: Sophie at March 12, 2008 05:46 PM

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