Movie review: Adoration

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

In Adoration, with wife and muse Arsinee Khanjian, Canadian filmmaker Atom Egoyan once again delves fully into themes that dominated his earlier films: voyeurism, video and the substance of memory.

While translating in French class the true story of a terrorist who planted a bomb in the luggage of his pregnant girlfriend, orphaned high school student Simon (Devon Bostick) is struck with an idea to tell his friends that the story is about his family, that the girl was his mother and he was the unborn child.

Khanjian's Sabine, who teaches Simon drama as well as French, encourages the deception as an exercise, but her decision is accompanied by some strange behavior and a few anonymous interactions with Simon's uncle and caretaker Tom (The Strangers' Scott Speedman). Things become less controllable when Simon takes his story online.

As with earlier works like Exotica, Egoyan's latest can seem like a jigsaw puzzle slowly revealing all its pieces, these involving the question of whether fabricated family memories are really any less reliable than actual memories altered by time and context.

Despite moments when the string-heavy score jacks up and things feel forced, Egoyan's process is mostly fascinating, and Speedman and Khanjian do a fine job of putting a human face on his big picture.


Opens Friday at the Gateway

Grade: B