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 »
Ema is a very attractive but innocent girl, so pretty that cars crash in her presence. Young marries Dr. Carlo Paiva, who she is not attracted to, but is her father's friend. They move to ... See full summary »
Manoel de Oliveira
Cécile Sanz de Alba,
Luís Miguel Cintra
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.
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.
This brief documentary-style film presents the status of Great Britain near the end of the Second World War by means of a visual diary for a baby boy born in September, 1944. Narration ... See full summary »
An early example of ultra-realism, this movie contrasts the quiet, bucolic life in the outskirts of Paris with the harsh, gory conditions inside the nearby slaughterhouses. Describes the ... See full summary »
Fascinating experimental documentary capturing a unique moment in recent history
This 1993 film by Chantal Akerman resembles some of her best early experimental work from the 1970s, especially 'Hotel Monterey'. This is a truly non-narrative film. Just a series of images from across Russia; often slow, amazingly long tracking shots (probably made from a car, but somehow rock steady), intercut with some long stationary wide angle shots, and shots of people in rooms, clearly staged. There's no dialogue and almost no music, only the incidental sounds of the place being photographed.
The film is clearly a comment on how lost Russia was at that moment in history after communism fell a lifetime of one ideology was suddenly gone, and nothing new had yet taking it's place. We see it in the faces
every person looks like they're waiting for something. The only
problem for me was the length. At 110 minutes both images and ideas, terrific though they were, started to feel repetitive. That said, I'd gladly re-visit and see if a second viewing, knowing now what the style of the film is, would be easier to settle into, and get lost in.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?