of whales, the moon and men
"Legendary cinéma vérité filmmakers Pierre Perrault and Michel Brault were attracted to Île-aux-Coudres for two reasons: the language of the people who lived on this small island in St. Lawrence and the whales. For centuries the fishermen of Île-aux-Coudres had caught belugas. The souls of the dead were invoked for a successful catch, and a unique technique was used: the men sank a trap of saplings into offshore mud at low tide to capture the white whale, a tradition that was abandoned in 1920. This feature-length film made in 1962 is the unrehearsed story of what happened when old-timers of the island were persuaded to revive the practice. And through the magic of words and the mystery of the catch, the film uncovers a spirituality rooted in the moon and the rhythm of the tides. Of Whales, the Moon and Men is more than adocumentary; it is a fresco of the myths and legends among the traditional fishing communities of Quebec. In French with English subtitles."