Since 5 June, Historia broadcasts on Friday at 21h the documentary series <em>A view under the stars</em>, packed with archival images, anecdotes, and opinions of experts and maniacs, open-air cinema.
June 26, 2020 17h48
The amazing renaissance of the drive-ins
CHRONIC / We have often announced the death of drive-ins. It was far from suspecting that the pandemic would bring them back in the news. Perfect Timing : since 5 June, Historia broadcasts on Friday at 21h the excellent documentary series A view under the stars, packed full of archival images, anecdotes, and opinions of experts and maniacs, open-air cinema. A work in eight episodes of the director Joëlle Desjardins Paquette, accents nostalgic of course, but also very grounded in the present and looking towards the future.
The reopening of the drive-ins, and greeted with much cynicism by the cultural milieu, has delighted the customer, fond of the cinema in garnotte. In Québec, no more than five : Saint-Hilaire, Saint-Eustache, Belle Neige in Val-Morin, Orford, and Paradiso in Grande-Rivière. It is in the 80’s as drive-ins have lived their golden age, with forty operators. Sept-Îles, Trois-Rivières, Saguenay, Val-d’or, Bonaventure, Grand-Mother, Victoriaville, Saint-Félicien, quebec, Montmagny, Laval, Sainte-Luce, Gatineau, Joliette, Drummondville, Val-Bélair, Rivière-du-Loup, Châteauguay, Alma, La Pocatière, Matane and the Magdalen Islands, to name a few, have all already had their drive-ins.
The reopening late of cinemas and entertainment venues led to the establishment of drive-in theatres temporary, which present films, but also performances from singers and comedians. Include the Royalmount on the island of Montreal, and Vaudreuil-Dorion, Montérégie, Saint-David-de-Falardeau, in Saguenay and Vallée du parc in Mauricie, among others. In Quebec, the idea has given rise to a quarrel between film distributors and the mayor Labeaume, so that the screens provided on the grounds of ExpoCité and the Jean-Lesage international Airport on 2 July will never be erected. The population of the capital and surrounding areas would have been able to reconnect with the genre, and who is deprived of drive-ins since the closure of the last in Saint-Nicolas six years ago. So much the worse.
Quebec has long resisted the establishment of drive-ins, yet created in the 30s in New Jersey; the clergy saw in it a source of corruption of youth. In a province choked by the conservatism of Maurice Duplessis, it will have to wait until 1970 to see the first in Saint-Georges-de-Beauce. It must be said that even today, some will not go there to see the film; the owner of the Ciné-parc St-Hilaire, Kevin Patenaude, finds all sorts of personal effects on his field at the end of the evening. “It seems that there are a lot of unijambistes at a drive-in park, because you really find a lot of “a shoe”, “sandal”. You could make a wardrobe of underwear that was found, pants, sometimes underwear over the pants, you wonder the people are divided how at them!” he says, amused.