Every year, as the International Literature Festival (FIL) approaches, we like to do a reader's portrait with one of its participants. This year, we have chosen filmmaker, producer and author Hugo Latulippe, whose documentary I rise up will be presented on September 24*.
What book have you just read?
I have just read the masterful Congo by Flemish author David Van Reybrouck, whom I adore; a personal account, ultra-documented, of this immense African territory with a violent destiny. It is a merciless brick of 800 pages… which documents the responsibility of colonial Belgium in the chaos of contemporary Congo. Painful, but necessary. Just before, I had read his Odes, a sort of lyrical tribute to life, the arts and beauty. One of the most beautiful books I've read this year. A humanist work, of an unclassifiable form, of the most inspiring…
And before that, it was…?
Phew! Difficult question because I often read several books at the same time and I always have a pile of books waiting for me […] I try… The habit of ruinsof the poet and essayist Marie-Hélène Voyer who seems to me to be one of the great voices of upcoming Quebec. This girl has a unique style! High class. Before, I read How forests think by Montreal anthropologist Eduardo Kohn, who contributes to this new vein of anthropological thought beyond the human. I also read Gens du nord by Perrine Leblanc.
Is there a novel that you would like to adapt to the big screen one day?< /p>
I dream of adapting the story of the Swiss painter René Richard told by the great Gabrielle Roy in The Secret Mountain. My fantasy would be to update the story, to adapt it and to propose to Marc Séguin to do “the stunts”, that is to say to paint the pictures in the film! […] But unless I meet a screwed-up patron, there's a slim chance that my dream will come true!
Of all the books you've read, what are your main favorites?
The American novelist Richard Powers exploits a new source of contemporary literature at the limits of philosophy with his Tree-world, Amazing and The time when we sang em>particularly. I'm a big fan.
Salman Rushdie is perhaps my favorite writer (along with the poet Pierre Morency). Shalimar the clown is his most successful novel, in my opinion.
The Road by Cormac McCarthy cut me off the breath.
Heart of Darknessby Joseph Conrad comes in second place in my dark favorites (I curse heaven that Coppola has already made it a masterpiece of cinema).
And at Chapter of the characters, I would say that the Morel desRaines du cielby Romain Gary and Le Vagabond des étoiles by Jack London are my “favorites”.
Can you tell us about a great classic that you loved?
General singingby Pablo Neruda is the first book that comes to mind. This great historical fresco written in verse is for me the ultimate exercise in style. The perfect work of art where substance and form are married. And of course I see a relationship with L'homme rapaillé by Gaston Miron… as a tradition of contribution of the arts to political history which seems to me to be specific to the great Latin American family (to which we belong).
As part of the FIL, is there a book or an author that you promise yourself to discover?
I read everything published by Quebec poet (and psychiatrist!) Ouanessa Younsi. I haven't delved into We Are Not Fairies yet, but I plan to do so this fall. I have a soft spot for people who cross boundaries, transcend their conditions or mix thoughts. I have a weakness for half-breeds in everything. I believe that the future of the world will be played out in “abundant” territory.
Have you ever read a book on the sly?
I read a lot of political essays, often from people I strongly disagree with. For example, I do think that sovereignty is the logical outcome of the history of Quebec. But like many people of my generation, I am intoxicated by the words of baby boomers who continue to defend the PQ and the Bloc Québécois in books that are always boring. These parties are, in my opinion, retrograde and conservative political vehicles. Never mind! I continue to read them, if only for the pleasure of crowning aloud. But also to understand their decline…
Is there another book you would like to tell us about?
I I have a bottomless admiration for the author of Au monde: Inventaire, Toino Dumas. It is this extraordinarily luminous poem that inspired my latest film I rise up. I owe him a lot. Thank you, Toino.
* In case of rain, the screening will be postponed to the following day.
Katrine Johns has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining The Gal Post, Katrine Johns worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my firstname.lastname@example.org 1-800-268-7128