Seducing Doctor Lewis (Canada; 108 min.)

directed by: Jean-François Pouliot
starring: Raymond Bouchard; Guy-Daniel Tremblay
La Grande séduction
Michael says: "This charming, French Canadian film is in the vein of WAKING NED DEVINE and CHOCOLAT, in its sweet, inoffensive, feel-good storyline. These films always make me feel slightly uncomfortable when considered in the independent millieu. Why is it that I expect my indie films to be edgier, darker, or more biting? Why can't I just take a pleasant, well-acted, well-scripted film that follows certain conventions at face value.

"That said, I did enjoy SEDUCING DOCTOR LEWIS quite a bit. It's quite amusing, and thoroughly charming in its tale of a tiny fishing village in Quebec trying to secure a town doctor, in order to attract a factory to provide employment for the community. There's a strong dose of "Northern Exposure" in its city-doctor trapped in a remote, tiny village and learning that there is merit to that rural way-of-life. The residents of St. Marie-La-Mauderne are quirky and lovable with their small-town ways. The urban doctor who runs afoul of the law in Montreal and must spend a month as physician for the village is allowed to reveal a fairly well-rounded character, and not just the jaded, money/pleasure-seeker he first appears to be.

"In order to attract this doctor to remain in St. Marie-La-Mauderne, the townspeople must create ever-increasingly elaborate fictions about the town. The plot proceeds pretty much how you'd expect, but there's a nice twist at the ending, where the truth is revealed earlier than one might expect. The acting is fine, and the music is charming... very reminiscent of similar European films.

"Taking SEDUCING DOCTOR LEWIS at face value, and removing my self-imposed indie-expectations, I give this film 3 1/2 cats"
Rob says: "SEDUCING DOCTOR LEWIS is simply a funny tender film. It's basically the plot of 'Northern Exposure' set in Quebec, but I enjoyed the wonderfully portrayed colorful characters, including the quaint little fishing village (love the coastal scenery). 4 cats"