The ‘almost 14’ Bastien (Joseph Engel, terrific) travels with his younger brother and mother to a cottage on a lake in rural Quebec for a summer holiday with the family of his mother's best friend. Bastien is impressed by the 16-year-old daughter Chloé (Sara Montpetit, equally good), who is unabashedly moody and prefers to avoid adult supervision. Despite the age difference, Chloé is charmed by Bastien and invites him to parties. She enjoys scaring him with stories about the child who mysteriously perished in Falcon Lake, where they go swimming. Rumour has it that the ghost of the child still haunts those waters… In her directorial debut—based on the graphic novel by Bastien Vivès—the Canadian actress Charlotte Le Bon perfectly captures the atmosphere of a long, dreary summer holiday in which everything but nothing happens. The beautifully darkly photographed setting of the dark forest-surrounded lake, the absence of adults and the strong score create an eerie tension. The warm bond between the characters and the turbulent feelings of the young people are portrayed realistically but also with humour by the young actors.
‘Equally charming and chilling… Le Bon's exceptionally assured first directorial film is full of light mischief yet heavy with horror-movie mood… Coming-of-age movies are usually, like growing up itself, some combination of funny, sad, rueful, awkward or frightening, but rarely are they so successfully all those things at once as in “Falcon Lake.”’—Jessica Kiang, Variety