Joy of Man's Desiring (2014) Trailer
Trailer for Joy of Man's Desiring.
Denis Côté’s filmmaking confounds those who attempt to define and categorize it—it’s what makes his cinema so captivating and worthy of attention. His narrative work (Carcasses, Vic & Flo Saw a Bear) draws from formal conventions of documentary while his non-fiction films alter familiar modes of observation. Joy of Man’s Desiring is a cinematic essay focused on the routines and repetition of various workplaces. As scenes move from machinists and garment workers to laundry attendants and carpenters, the mise-en-scène and sound design are as highly constructed as the products being manufactured. Côté leaves little to chance, intentionally drawing as much attention to the form of the filmmaker’s work as he does to the chosen labourers he follows. Interspersed are poetic soliloquies by performers (as workers) that heighten awareness that there is no escapism in documentary, and that the man-and-machine relationship of manufacturing has a constant presence in filmmaking.