The man who captured Lake Superior in the sun-drunk Canadian coming-of-ager is a big talent.
The star of Canadian director Andrew Cividino’s debut feature, Sleeping Giant, is a lake. Cividno grew up around Lake Superior in Ontario and has said that he wanted to capture the energy of that setting. He can be satisfied on that count. While the dynamic sometimes feels contrived in this teenage boy-led tale of an unforgettable summer, the lake always pulls its weight.
Sometimes dazzling in the foreground, colours dancing like a mermaid’s tail in the sun, sometimes a dark expanse in a night-time background, it infects the mood creating a sense of drunkenness and danger. It holds the characters when they slice through on a boat leaving white tramlines or plummet down in a cocoon of bubbles after jumping from a cliff-top. It is bigger than them all, even when adolescent bickering turns into something more consequential. And although it serves as a friend, enabling chilled activities, it could kill them with total indifference.
The man responsible for capturing all of this is the Toronto-based cinematographer and Ryan Gosling lookalike, James Klopko. Do look out for his work.