Jeanne Dielman, 23, Quai du Commerce 1080 Bruxelles

Jeanne Dielman, 23, Quai du Commerce 1080 Bruxelles ★★★★½

Damn between this, Ali and 4 Months I don’t remember the last time I watched such a stretch of excellent movies. Women’s month finale for me is a rewatch of this lengthyyyy masterpiece—last time I saw this was at a theater shortly after Akerman’s suicide. Has a hypnotic quality for sure but not nearly as monotonous as its detractors make it seem...I think aside from the very long takes and minimal dialogue it’s pretty rigid structurally and there’s a good variety of characters, locations and scenarios to keep this from being a tedious exercise for non-Arthouse folk. 

However it’s definitely 200+ minutes of a woman doing housework in real time and it wants you to pay close attention to Akerman’s use of subtle details of her subject’s routine; the microexpressions, unspoken tension, signs of deafening rage laying dormant inside her fissured psyche building gradually until the final day when the cracks in her regimen become impossible not to notice and the weight of everything you just watched come violently crashing down like a dam bursting open. One of the most viscerally satisfying final hours of a movie, I swear. 

9.5

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