Directed by Moïse Marcoux-Chabot and produced by Colette Loumède, Ramaillages (Gatherings) is must viewing: a documentary series that takes a sensitive, hopeful look at the neo-rural phenomenon (a.k.a. de-urbanization) and the key environmental challenges of our time.
In Quebec’s Gaspé Peninsula, communities are coming together and aspiring to a healthier way of life built around cooperation and food self-sufficiency. In sync with the changing seasons, these rural dwellers are organizing locally to bring their ideals to life and preserve their land.
Small groups form and share values, know-how and techniques. Sustainable initiatives flourish. Extending beyond ecological farming and a focus on community, the power of the movement is also harnessed to foster broad resistance to drilling projects in the peninsula.
Hewing to the direct cinema tradition, Marcoux-Chabot and his participatory camera encounter men and women living in a vast rural region, letting their dreams take root and knitting a tighter social fabric—one stitch at a time.
Ramaillages (Gatherings) is a must-see documentary series that takes a sensitive, hopeful look at the neo-rural phenomenon and today’s environmental challenges, as the seasons change in the Gaspé Peninsula.
I met filmmaker Moïse Marcoux-Chabot after discovering his shorts, including Lespouère and Sons étranges. Around the same time, his work with a group of young activist filmmakers organizing a program of screenings called Courts critiques made him a young director to watch, both for his commitment and his vision of documentary cinema. Opening the doors of the Documentary Studio to him was a no-brainer. Moïse was hesitant about working with a producer and entrusting them with his next project, not knowing where the mutual desire to collaborate would take us. At first we simply had to get to know each other. We were complete strangers, and distance was a big challenge. I was in Montreal; Moïse was in Mont-Louis, in the Gaspé. How would I go about working with a director who lived so far away? Because Quebec is huge; the land is vast. Vast and beautiful, just like the people who decide to live on it and make it their life’s work.
To me, the fact that Moïse was driven by a profound desire to film the land, as well as the people who were living on it and bringing their dreams to life there, made this shoot a must. Moïse pitched his project to me very simply: “There’s something happening in the Gaspé. A movement. I’m going to be part of it and I want to document it. I want to be attuned to what Gaspésiens have to say—long-time residents and newcomers alike—the same way Pierre Perrault was with the people of Île-aux-Coudres. To be attentive to chance events and raw emotions. I hope to capture and show the humanity, the beauty, and the challenges of the rural life they’ve chosen for themselves, at a time when the regions have been hit hard by government austerity policies and an industrialized vision of regional development. We’ll follow a group of 10 people, both young neo-rurals and original Gaspésiens, each of them active in their own way, locally and regionally. Taking an up-close, deeply sensitive look, paying close attention to the poetry of everyday speech, my participatory camera will show men and women attempting to stitch together a torn social and cultural fabric, pushing back against the market economy.”
Three years later, Moïse has given us a documentary series that captured events as they happened, with the entire production apparatus adapting to his creative process when necessary. It’s been my distinct pleasure to provide him with the means to do it, and to lend support and guidance along the way.
Being an NFB producer is a wonderful job, wouldn’t you say?
With the participation of
Valérie B. Lemay
Gary Metallic Sr
Filmed in the Gaspé Peninsula in Bonaventure, Cap-au-Renard, Cap-Seize, Caplan, Carleton-sur-Mer, Gaspé, Gros-Morne, L’Anse-Pleureuse, Maria, Marsoui, Matane, Mont-Louis, Mont-Saint-Pierre, Murdochville, Paspébiac, Ruisseau-Flétan, Saint-Godefroi, Saint-Louis, Saint-Siméon, Val-d’Espoir
Research, Image and Sound
Technical Consultation – Camera
Technical Support – Editing
Translation and Subtitling
Graphic Design, Titles and Illustrations
Mario Jean (MADOC)
Music Recording and Mix
Jean Paul Vialard
Composed by Richard Desjardins and Jean Derome
Interpreted by Sylvain Picard
Acting Development Producer