Chantal Akerman

Chantal Akerman

Highest Rated: 100% News From Home (1977)

Lowest Rated: 60% From the Other Side (2002)

Birthday: Jun 06, 1950

Birthplace: Brussels, Belgium

One of the most significant independent filmmakers of her era, Chantal Akerman possessed a pronounced visual and narrative style, influenced by structuralism and minimalism, which offers astute insights into women's role in modern culture. Akerman's interest in film was sparked at the age of 15 by a viewing of Jean-Luc Godard's "Pierrot le Fou" (1965), prompting her to enroll in the Belgian film school, INSAS. After about two years' study she quit school, eager to begin making films rather than sitting in a classroom. Akerman saved money from clerical and waitressing jobs to make several short films which received minimal recognition. It was not until she moved to New York in 1971 that Akerman began to develop her distinctive visual style and to deal with those themes which dominated her work. In America she became acquainted with the films of the avant-garde, specifically those of Michael Snow and Stan Brakhage. Her first two features, "Hotel Monterey" (1972) and "Je Tu Il Elle" (1974), with their studiously static camerawork and minimal dialogue, were early indications of the visual style which came to full flowering in "Jeanne Dielman, 23 quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles" (1975). The reception of this 200-minute, minimally plotted film was mixed. It was criticized by many as a boring and meaningless minimalist exercise; Akerman's defenders, however, were awed by her visual aesthetic and use of real time to emphasize the routine of her protagonist's world. Thanks to the film's exposure, Akerman was able to secure financial backing from the Gaumont company and from German TV for the striking "Les Rendezvous d'Anna" (1978). Her first semi-commercial effort, it featured popular French actors Aurore Clement and Jean-Pierre Cassel in a story of a female director trekking across Europe to promote her latest film. Again, static camerawork and minimal dialogue created a sense of alienation which mirrored the emptiness and insincerity of the protagonist's encounters. After failing to raise $25 million for an adaptation of Isaac Bashevis Singer's 1969 novel "The Manor," Akerman returned to independent production with "All Night Long" (1982), an insightful drama contrasting romantic illusions with harsh realities. Akerman's "Golden Eighties" (1986) was a satire of musicals set completely within the confines of a Brussels shopping mall. Here too her concern was with idealized notions of romance; unlike her earlier works, however, the central story is complemented by several subplots and the film's pacing is a little more sprightly, although Akerman's signature static camera provides a unique perspective on the structured world of the shopping mall. In 1988 Akerman returned to New York to film "American Stories/Food, Family and Philosophy," an exploration of her Jewish heritage through a series of stories told by immigrants. In the '90s, Akerman moved into more commercial filmmaking as the independent film boom allowed more idiosyncratic cinematic approaches into the mainstream. The drama "Night and Day" (1991) attracted widespread critical attention, and was followed by "A Couch in New York" (1996), Akerman's most accessible film to date, starring William Hurt, Juliette Binoche, and Richard Jenkins. For the rest of her career, Akerman split her attention between experimental films, documentaries, and narrative features like "The Captive" (2000) and "Tomorrow We Move" (2004), both of which were co-written by Dutch novelist and theorist Eric de Kuyper. An adaptation of the Joseph Conrad novel "Almayer's Folly" (2010) received widespread critical acclaim. Akerman's final film, "No Home Movie" (2015), was a documentary about her mother, Natalia (who died in 2014), and her inability to speak about her experiences at Auschwitz. Chantal Akerman committed suicide on or about October 5, 2015, in Paris. She was 65 years old.

Highest rated movies

I Don't Belong Anywhere: The Cinema of Chantal Akerman
I, You, She, He

Photos

Filmography

Movies

Credit
100% No Score Yet I Don't Belong Anywhere: The Cinema of Chantal Akerman Unknown (Character) - 2015
89% 69% No Home Movie Director,
Producer,
Cinematographer
$24.1K 2015
87% 40% Almayer's Folly Director,
Screenwriter,
Producer
- 2011
No Score Yet No Score Yet Chantal Akerman, From Here Self - 2010
No Score Yet 43% State of the World Director - 2007
No Score Yet No Score Yet Down There Director,
Writer,
Cinematographer
- 2006
No Score Yet 50% Tomorrow We Move Director,
Writer
- 2004
60% 78% From the Other Side Director,
Writer
- 2002
77% 48% The Captive Director,
Screenwriter
- 2000
No Score Yet 60% Sud Director,
Writer
- 1999
No Score Yet 32% A Couch in New York Director,
Writer
- 1996
No Score Yet 83% From the East Director,
Screenwriter
- 1993
No Score Yet No Score Yet Against Oblivion Director - 1992
No Score Yet 78% Night and Day Director - 1991
No Score Yet No Score Yet American Stories Director,
Screenwriter
- 1989
No Score Yet No Score Yet Trois strophes sur le nom de Sacher Director - 1989
No Score Yet No Score Yet Window Shopping Director - 1986
No Score Yet No Score Yet Letters Home Director - 1986
No Score Yet No Score Yet Golden Eighties Director,
Screenwriter
- 1986
No Score Yet No Score Yet Seven Women, Seven Sins Director,
Screenwriter
- 1986
No Score Yet No Score Yet She Spent So Many Hours Under the Sun Lamps Unknown (Character) - 1985
No Score Yet No Score Yet J'ai faim, j'ai froid Director - 1984
No Score Yet 50% On Tour With Pina Bausch Director - 1983
No Score Yet No Score Yet Man With a Suitcase Unknown (Character),
Director,
Screenwriter
- 1983
No Score Yet No Score Yet Toute une nuit Director,
Screenwriter
- 1982
No Score Yet No Score Yet Dis-moi Director - 1980
71% 85% Meetings With Anna Director,
Screenwriter
- 1978
100% 68% News From Home Director,
Writer
- 1977
96% 83% Jeanne Dielman, 23 Commerce Quay, 1080 Brussels Director,
Writer
- 1975
100% 67% I, You, She, He Julie (Character),
Director,
Writer
- 1974
No Score Yet No Score Yet Le 15/8 Unknown (Character),
Director,
Screenwriter,
Cinematographer,
Film Editor
- 1973
No Score Yet 50% Hotel Monterey Director - 1972
No Score Yet 43% La chambre Director,
Screenwriter,
Film Editor
- 1972
No Score Yet 81% Saute ma ville The girl (Character),
Director
- 1968

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