Tuesday, October 6, 2015

RIP Train: CHANTAL AKERMAN (1950-2015)

You may or may not have heard of Chantal Akerman.  She never worked in "mainstream" cinema, so to speak, or Hollywood for sure.  She was a French filmmaker who made radical, even experimental pieces of cinema in large part about the female experience - and by that I mean revolving around ritual.  She grew up, from what I've read, in a relatively strict Jewish religious household, and ritual was paramount. 

So a film like Jeanne Dielman, starring Delphine Seyrig - probably her crowning achievement, a 3 1/2 hour film that she made when she was 25 years old - is all the more precious because it chronicles, in painstaking detail, what it means for a grown woman to have to *do* things in the home (both domestic and sexual in nature.

Considering how few and precious female directors are in this industry, let alone masters, this one hurts (I should note I hadn't seen a new film from her in a while, but she never stopped working even as she became obscurer from time to time). 

Here is my review of Jeanne Dielman (it's a longer title by the way, but you can click the link to see what it is): 

And some other films:

Histories d'Amerique (1988) (a very rare film, got to watch it on a college documentary class)

Je, tu, il, ell (1976) (notable for Akerman acting in the film)

No comments:

Post a Comment