Anna, a detached and diffident director, arrives in Germany to show her latest film; she checks into a hotel, invites a stranger to her bed, and abruptly tells him to leave. He asks her to ...
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Chantal Akerman, the Belgian filmmaker, lives in New York. Filmed images of the City are accompanied by the texts of Chantal Akerman's loving but manipulative mother back home in Brussels. ... See full summary »
Hotel Monterey is a cheap hotel in New York reserved for the outcasts of American society. Chantal Akerman invites viewers to visit this unusual place as wall as the people who live there, from the reception up to the last story.
In a 360° circular panoramic shot the camera slowly pans an entire apartment (or house). When it first passes the bedroom there is nobody there but each time it shows the room again Chantal... See full summary »
Three young women at a hair salon all like the son of the clothing store proprietors across the mall. Although Robby is selfish and shallow, he's appealing to Lili, the salon's manager, ... See full summary »
A lonely widowed housewife does her daily chores, takes care of her apartment where she lives with her teenage son, and turns the occasional trick to make ends meet. However, something happens that changes her safe routine.
Jack and Julie live in a bare flat in Paris. At night, Jack drives a taxi while Julie wanders around the city, and in the day they make love. One day Julie meets Joseph, the daytime driver ... See full summary »
Anna, a detached and diffident director, arrives in Germany to show her latest film; she checks into a hotel, invites a stranger to her bed, and abruptly tells him to leave. He asks her to a birthday lunch with his mother and daughter; she goes. Afterward, in Cologne, she meets an old friend, a Polish Jew and war refugee. In Brussels, she spends the night at a hotel with her mother, whom she rarely sees. On the train, a stranger tells his story. Last, it's home to Paris, where her lover Daniel picks her up and they go to a hotel. Throughout, people make personal revelations to her, and Anna listens with little affect. Although it was 30 years ago, the war seems ever present. Written by
Strong use of camera-work to tell an intimate story
Amazingly shot, with the film always demonstrating a tremendous, disciplined use of image to convey mood and story. The film is full of long takes using striking symmetry; the camera is always finding frames within frames. For me, the story itself is interesting intellectually, but does lack emotional power; traveling to a film festival, a young femme filmmaker has a series of sadly empty encounters with people, leading to long, well-written monologues by the various lost souls. Sometimes too on the nose and speechy with its ideas, but always intelligent, physically beautiful film-making. For those with patience and an interest in image as well as story.
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