Jeanne Dielman, 23, Quai du Commerce 1080 Bruxelles

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

It completely makes sense that Jeanne's life starts falling apart when you realize that her son can't pick out his own outfits, she has to polish her son's shoes, her house has garbage lighting (why is it so dark in the middle of the day), she's washing dishes without her sleeves rolled up, everyone's wearing shoes indoors, and her plates are way too goddamn small for her food.

Still though, this is a truly experimental film. Chantal Akerman is getting her point across through repetition rather than a traditional narrative. The first twenty minutes were almost off-putting, and I was frustrated that so little time had elapsed. But that was pretty much the last time I really complained. I got into the rhythm of the film, and it was actually not too difficult to stay engaged. Of course, I zoned out during a few moments, but for the most part, it never bored me. There's something cathartic about watching household chores play out in real-time.

This is such an important film in cinema history. Akerman creates an unorthodox and compelling character study about a housewife, who is often pushed to the side in standard narrative features. The staggering length may have been challenging to get through at times, but I came out of the film really appreciating it. This further proves that in terms of long and slow cinema, having less dialogue is usually an advantage for me.

Also, I don't know if this is on purpose or not, but the night scenes were EXTREMELY underexposed. I couldn't see jack-shit. Can't wait for the 2023 American remake Jeanne Dielman 23 Commercial Properties 1080 Brussel Sprouts where Jeanne is browsing Instagram and looking at dog filter selfies to pass the time while waiting for the coffee to boil.

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