The Trap, a movie by Lina Verchery

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In a Cape Breton village, Buddhist monks and nuns pray in their abbey, while French-speaking fishermen put out to sea to haul in their lobster traps. Seemingly divided by language, culture and religion, these people share more than meets the eye. The film delicately weaves a connection between the beliefs of the two groups, both regarding life as a cycle.

Once a year, the Buddhist monks and nuns buy the fishermen’s last lobster catch and release it back into the sea, believing that these lobsters could be reincarnated in the cycle leading to enlightenment. The fishermen too regard existence as a natural cycle. They preserve life by delicately putting back in the water female lobsters carrying eggs, which will hatch into the lobsters the men’s descendants will fish. The film considers mutual respect and tolerance.

This documentary short was produced as part of the Tremplin program, which enables young Francophone filmmakers to make a first production in a professional context.

2007, 19 min 25 s

The movie is available on DVD from the National Film Board of Canada. A French version is also available. More information at this link:

Lina Verchery is a doctoral student in Buddhist Studies at Harvard University, where she is a Frank Knox Fellow and a Fellow at the Harvard Film Study Center. Before writing and directing La Trappe (The Trap) for the National Film Board of Canada, which won for Best French-Canadian Short Film at the 2008 Festival International du Cinéma Francophone en Acadie (FICFA), Lina co-wrote and co-directed De Midi à Minuit, a documentary short about cab drivers in Montréal which won first prize in the Alliance Française’s Concours Senghor and a trip to the 2006 Cannes Film Festival. Lina has fifteen years of professional performance experience in film, television, radio, theatre and dance, working both in North America and Asia.

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