Synopsis

For her third feature and first documentary, the gifted actor-turned-filmmaker Sarah Polley (Away from Her, Take This Waltz) has chosen to focus on her parents: Canadian actor and casting director Diane and British-born actor Michael. Like any married couple, they experienced their fair share of happiness and disappointment. Diane in particular, is seen to have been a very private figure behind her outgoing veneer. Through interviews with family members and friends, as well as employing archive footage and brilliantly staged Super-8 reconstructions, Polley’s riveting investigation into Michael and Diane’s life, as individuals and a couple, becomes an exploration of the role of memory, questioning its ownership and also the veracity of recollection. Can we ever uncover every facet of those closest to us and, ultimately, do we want to? Stories We Tell is an intelligent, generous and deeply satisfying experience.

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Director

Sarah Polley
Sarah Polley has been writing and directing in Canada since 1999 when she made her directorial debut: she wrote, directed and produced the short films Don’t Think Twice (starring Tom McCamus and Jennifer Podemski) and The Best Day of My Life. In 2001, she wrote, directed and co‐produced I Shout Love, starring Kristen Thomson who won an ACTRA Award for her performance. The film also won the 2003 Genie Award for Best Live Action Short Drama. In 2002, Sarah wrote and directed The Harp, one of the episodes in the TV series The Shields Stories. In 2007, Sarah wrote and directed Away from Her, starring Julie Christie, Gordon Pinsent and Olympia Dukakis, adapted from the Alice Munro short story ‘The Bear Came Over the Mountain’. In addition to two Oscar nominations (Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Actress), Away from Her garnered a long list of awards from organisations such as the London Critics’ Circle (British Actress of the Year), Los Angeles Film Critics Association (New Generations Award), National Board of Review (Best Actress), National Society of Film Critics (Best Actress). Additionally, Away from Her earned a Chlotrudis Award for Best Adapted Screenplay, an SAG Award (Best Actress), a Golden Globe (Best Actress), seven Genie Awards (including Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director), Best Feature Film and Best Direction from the Directors Guild of Canada and Best Feature Film from the Writers Guild of Canada. In 2010, Sarah wrote and directed her second feature, the romantic drama Take This Waltz, starring Michelle Williams, Luke Kirby, Seth Rogen and Sarah Silverman.

Cast

Rebecca Jenkins: Diane Polley Peter Evans: Michael Polley Alex Hatz: Harry Gulkin


Crew

Sarah Polley: Director / writer Anita Lee: Producer Silva Basmajian: Executive Producer Michael Munn: Editor Iris Ng: Director of Photography

Details

DVD catalogue number: CFW665DVD Blu-ray catalogue number: CFW083BD

Awards






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Out now on DVD, Blu-ray & on demand

GENRE: Documentary

CERTIFICATE: 12A

DIRECTOR: Sarah Polley

CAST:
Rebecca Jenkins: Diane Polley
Peter Evans: Michael Polley
Alex Hatz: Harry Gulkin
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CREW:
Sarah Polley: Director / writer
Anita Lee: Producer
Silva Basmajian: Executive Producer
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DURATION: 109 Mins

COUNTRIES: Canada

LANGUAGES: English

Where to watch

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Poster

Reviews


  • “Polley's cine-tribute is a gripping and absorbing meditation on the unknowability of other lives”

    Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian


  • “A huge achievement, a genuine revelation”

    Dan Jolin, Empire


  • “Beautiful and funny”

    Cath Clarke, Time Out


  • “Bittersweet and compelling”

    Little White Lies

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