Pour la suite du monde
(The Moontrap/Of Whales, the Moon and Men/So the World Goes On)
Format: 16mm Black & White
Runtime: 105 min
National Film Board of Canada
For centuries the inhabitants of Île-aux-Coudres, a small island in the
St. Lawrence River, trapped beluga whales by sinking a weir of saplings into the offshore mud at low tide. After 1920 the practice was abandoned.
In 1962, Michel Brault and Pierre Perrault, and a team of filmmakers from the NFB, arrived on the island to document life on Île-aux-Coudres and the resumption of the traditional whale trapping practice.
The resulting film was hugely popular in Quebec and soon became a classic of Canadian cinema. It represented a major development in direct cinema: moving away from simple observation to more immediate participation and an emphasis on the language of the people portrayed.
Pour la suite du monde also represents the direct cinema style of Quebec, which was evolving at that time. The most notable aspect of the approach was its emphasis on the importance of tradition as an expression of the collective life and will of a people.
Pour la suite du monde was a major critical success upon its initial release and won several awards, including the 1964 Canadian Film Award for film of the year, and it has been extensively discussed and analyzed since then.