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Documentary medium-length | 65 & 52 minutes | 2012

A research on the experience of aging by Fernand Dansereau. Visit the official website

Researched, written and directed by Fernand Dansereau

Produced by Ginette Petit and Nathalie Bissonnette

Distribution Les Films Outsiders

Broadcaster Radio-Canada


Director of Photography Julien Fontaine

Edited by Hélène Girard

Sound Stéphane Barsalou

Postproduction Studios BeeBop

Original Music by Francine Beaudry

Online Development Les Films Outsiders

*  additional $ 10 fee applies for sending DVD


“It is an old man’s laughter that expresses the greatest wisdom” says the Zen axiom.

In this documentary Fernand Dansereau explores the unique relationship between age and laughter.  He follows several trains of thought and tries to retrace the sources of the resistance that take hold of us when we try and associate the terms laughter and old age.  Is it reasonable to hope for a sort of ultimate wisdom that allows us, at the end of our lives, to attain a state of smiling grace that transcends fear, regrets and sadness?

Fernand Dansereau


From 1955 to 1968, Fernand Dansereau took on various roles at the National Film Board: animator, writer, director, producer, and was eventually put in charge of all French production. Since 1968, he has directed over 50 shorts and feature-length films and has produced almost as many. He has headed both the Institut québécois du cinéma and the Institut national de l’image et du son (Inis). His ventures in television include writing the series Le parc des Braves, adapting Les Filles de Caleb for TV and scriptwriting on the series Shehaweh and Caserne 24. In 2005, the Quebec government awarded him the Prix Albert-Tessier for his life’s work. In 2007, he directed a feature film called La brunante, which was nominated at the 2008 Jutra Awards in multiple categories including Best Film and Best Director. In 2010, film critics and audiences alike universally praised his documentary Les porteurs d’espoir. In 2012, after a little over two years of research on the subject, the documentary Le vieil âge et le rire hit the screen and in February of that year, after its first run, won the Viewers’ Choice award at the Rendez-vous du Cinéma Québécois.


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