There’s a room in every family house that is the heart of everyday life. So much can happen in this one room over time, from the small meaningless moments that happen daily, to the unforgettable moments that define our lives. Daniel Daigle (He’s Mine (C’est Mon Kid)) returns to Short of the Week with his latest short Garage de Soir (Garage at Night), a heartfelt and entertaining short that chronicles the relationship between two brothers through the moments they share in one room – the garage.
Perfectly capturing the complex bond between two siblings and what it means to grow up together, Garage de Soir focuses on those smaller, seemingly insignificant moments and how we later realize how valuable they were in shaping the person we become. In Daigle’s film, we’re invited into the inner circle of two brothers at two very different stages in their lives. The younger brother still idolizing his elder sibling and trying to discover his own identity, whilst his older brother coasts through life, more interested in smoking weed, than fulfilling any of his much discussed plans. Growing up with brothers of his own, their shenanigans provided great material for writer/director Daigle.
The structure of Garage de Soir is essential in its success. Consisting of one shot scenes, the pacing is fast and intensifies the comedic aspect of the short. By not changing locations, the focus of the film is put intently on its two lead characters and how their relationship and personal identity rapidly evolves over the 13-minute duration. Some scenes are very quick and serve their purpose in establishing the bond between brothers, while we spend more time in the scenes that end up being more important in how our on-screen siblings grow up and make decisions. The main benefit from this set up, is how intimate the film feels, the audience feels like it is right there with them in that garage – you may even feel a little hazy from second-hand smoke!
The editing sets the tone of the film, but it’s the authentic feel of the writing and the compelling performances that carry the film. Daigle wrote characters and situations that feel very real and while his fictional brothers display many flaws, they are two lovable characters that we can’t help but root for. Perfectly portrayed by Guillaume Laurin and Antoine Pilon, whether smoking weed, watching porn or giving/receiving tips on how to get a girl, the layers of the characters are subtlety brought to the screen, as the two evolve throughout the year.
Essentially a double coming-of-age story set within four walls, Garage de Soir isn’t a film full of plot twists. Its strength relies on its entertaining and original take on the sibling bond and how genuine it all feels. It’s hard to think of another short that captures this relationship so perfectly, in such a short time.
Garage de Soir was self-financed and shot over only two days. Daigle’s film had a successful festival run, with notable stops at Regard and ShortFest, it was also nominated at the Canadian Screen Awards in 2018, before premiering online as a Vimeo Staff Pick Premiere. Daigle’s next project is already in post-production as he is currently in the editing room.