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directed by Ingrid Veninger
Canada 2017


Young Bea (Charlotte Salisbury), dog Callum, and her mother Ally (Delphine Roussel, KILLJOYS) travel from Toronto out to the sticks for a trial reconciliation with estranged father Scotty (Christopher Bolton, ROCK MY WORLD) who has been running his late father's diner. Sheltered and solitary, Bea is encouraged to open up a little curbside "gift shop" selling handmade gifts to make pocket money and meet local kids while her parents spend time together. While Bea slowly adapts to the novel surroundings, she is just as unaware as her parents that they are not on the same page: Scotty is fixing up the diner with an eye towards a livelihood while Ally is under the impression that he is fixing it up for sale. Bea makes fast friends with self-assured Kate (Lucinda Armstrong Hall) who has broken off relations with her regular clique of friends for spreading rumors about her idolized older brother Romeo (Harrison Tanner) who has been emotionally volatile since he had an accident that required brain surgery. As Bea begins spending all of her time with Kate, her mother becomes concerned about Kate's influence. Exposed to things both uncomfortable and exciting by way of Kate's unstable home life, Bea takes to heart the importance Kate takes on "not squealing" which is tested when she witnesses something that puts her friend in mortal danger.

Although the film flirts with nascent lesbianism in a close female friendship, PORCUPINE LAKE is very much a rare female-focused coming-of-age story. While such stories involving young male characters are more likely to explore the ambiguities of emerging sexuality, the sixth feature of Bratislava-born Canadian actress Ingrid Veninger (THE GATE) questions the degree to which factors in the lives of both characters lead to such an intense friendship and why the characters themselves might read a sexual aspect in their closeness. While Kate comes from a difficult background and is exposed to promiscuous behavior on the part of her older siblings and her alcoholic mother, is she really any more of a bad influence than any other child who might mimic such behavior, or is Bea's mother just clingy and worried about her daughter becoming enamored of the area and taking her father's side? Does Ally enable Bea's solitary nature and indirectly reward her physical frailty and frequent fainting spells? Do Bea and Kate really believe Ally might let Kate come back to Toronto and live with them, or is it a fantasy they are merely entertaining as the end of the summer looms big? Sensitive performances, striking photography, and assured direction make PORCUPINE LAKE a cut above the more formulaic examples of the coming-of-age genre.

Eric Cotenas


Theatrical Release: 6 October 2017 (USA)

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DVD Review: Breaking Glass Pictures - Region 1 - NTSC

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for the Review!

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Breaking Glass Pictures

Region 1 - NTSC

Runtime 1:24:12

1.78:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.30 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.


Audio English Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles None
Features Release Information:
Studio: Breaking Glass Pictures

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.78:1

Edition Details:
'The Other Side of Porcupine Lake' documentary (16:9; 85:03)
Interviews with the Cast and Crew (16:9; 10:16)
First Auditions (16:9; 3:15)
Trailer (16:9; 1:59)

DVD Release Date: August 14th, 2018

Chapters 10



Breaking Glass' mid-range bitrate, progressive, anamorphic transfer of this digitally-lensed production gets the job done. The colors are deliberately skewed towards the warm, with vibrant greens and skintones ranging from pale to pink. The Dolby Digital 5.1 track is front-oriented with few opportunities for a fuller use of the sound field apart from some scenes with background activity and some of the score. English closed captioning is provided. Most impressive of the extras is a feature-length look behind the scenes, covering the fourth month pre-production period (auditions, rehearsals, location scouting), three week shoot, and the fourth month post-production period. Also included is an EPK-style cast/crew interview featurette, the first auditions of both young leads, the film's trailer, and other trailers.

  - Eric Cotenas


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Region 1 - NTSC

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