The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
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All Critics (6)
| Top Critics (1)
| Fresh (5)
| Rotten (1)
Miss Akerman's film has a crisp, simple elegance at times, as the camera studies a hotel room or a train station with a patience like Anna's own.
A not particularly believable, conventional narrative about a film director (Aurore Clément) who feels alienated (surprise!) and listens to a lot of disparate people talk, talk, talk.
The film is a travelogue almost devoid of any sight-seeing features.
It's a sobering hypnotic study in modern relationships that has a bewildering pronouncement that is strangely erotic, cruel and terribly honest.
The modern age is not the death of sex or friendship, and perhaps art and love will also survive, but they need to be recognized in new ways, hustled up from often unpromising elements.
In "Les Rendez-Vous D'Anna," Anna Silver(Aurore Clement), a film director, checks into a hotel in Essen, West Germany for a showing of her latest film. When she gets to her room, she places a call to Italy and is told of a wait of two hours. Relaxing, she does not even take off her coat or shoes at first before being called down to the theater and an interview. Upon her return, she is accompanied by Heinrich(Helmut Griem), a schoolteacher. During their lovemaking, she stops, saying that she does not love him.(Since when has that ever stopped anybody?) At least, maybe she could meet his daughter the following day before she leaves?
I understand how some people could get frustrated with the static pace of "Les Rendez-Vous D'Anna." Even though I feared the DVD was skipping in a couple of places and would have liked the performances to be a little more animated, the movie's slowness works well in contrast to Anna who is being pushed and pulled in several directions at once, not only all over Europe which has problems of its own going back to World War II, but also on a personal level which reflects back on writer-director Chantal Akerman whose early films, like this one, seem very autobiographical.(To punctuate this, her middle name is Anne.) For Anna, that comes down to a choice between a career and a family(she has had two abortions). That's not all as there is another direction which simultaneously excites her and frightens her which is mentioned in a searing confession towards the end of the movie.
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