Sep 12, 2005

News From Home (1976)


In Chantal Akerman's diary film, she fills a feature-length movie of images of the most loneliest places one could ever find in New York City, while on the soundtrack she reads letters received from her native Belgium. This essay on detachment is another affecting piece of isolation by a filmmaker whose works are often shrugged off as being "cold". I don't agree at all- I find her films tremendously moving, and this remains (for me) her finest work (admittedly, I still haven't seen JEANNE DIELMAN). I saw this movie just days before 9/11. And when we saw the images on the TV of the towers falling, I thought back to the long single take that completes this film. We see the New York skyline from the viewpoint of a boat that leaves the concrete jungle- that landscape has abruptly changed.

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