Chantal Akerman par Chantal Akerman

  • 64'
  • France
  • 1996
The apartment of Chantal Akerman in Brussels. First her dog comes and then she does too. She goes to sit in the wide shot, lights a cigarette and starts talking. 'One day I met Janine Bazin and André S. Labarthe. They asked if I would like to make an episode for their series 'Cinéastes de Notre Temps' (Akerman deliberately sticks to the original name of this series). 'I said: why not? I suggested several film-makers to them, but they had all already been on. As a kind of provocative joke I then suggested: okay, then it will have to be about me. They thought that was a good idea. Then I said to myself: if I were to make a 'Cinéastes de Notre Temps' about myself as the film-maker of 'Notre Temps', then it will have to be a kind of self-portrait. A self-portrait in which I speak through fragments from my own films. I show the fragments without commentary or context as if they are rushes. But Janine and André were not happy about that. They thought that I should make myself say something about my films and not just allow the material to speak for itself. And that's when the problems started.'Akerman wrote a long and angry letter. A kind of pamphlet about her views on film, film-making and film viewing. She reads it out loud and becomes increasingly agitated. The frame narrows to a single close-up. And then the autoportrait starts as she wanted to make it. A beautiful personal selection that speaks for itself.
Chantal Akerman
Country of production
Festival Edition
IFFR 1997
Betacam SP PAL
Chantal Akerman