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The best film in history, directed by a woman, ousts Hitchcock’s films

The prestigious British magazine Sight & Sound, known for its popular survey to find out the 100 best films in cinema historyaccording to international critics, made its list public at the end of last year.

Since 1952, and every ten years, the publication has carried out this ‘mega’ survey that is highly recognized by the film sector.

The surprise was huge when the results of this latest edition, the eighth, were known, in which 1,639 critics, programmers, film professionals and academics have voted of all the world.

Chantal Akerman signs the best film in history according to the publication.

Mario De Munck

And the fact is that at number one in this ranking, and displacing Vertigo by Alfred Hitchcock, a film little known to the general public has emerged, which ten years earlier had not even appeared in the top 50. Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Brussels is the title of the film made by Chantal Akerman in 1975.

The film was defined at the time by the New York Times as “the first masterpiece of feminism in the history of cinema.”

Starring Delphine Seyrig, The plot follows the daily life over the course of three days of a young widow who takes care of household chores. in the morning, while her son is at school, and that she works as a prostitute in the afternoon.

It had its world premiere at the Directors’ Fortnight at the Cannes Film Festival and achieved notable commercial success, which allowed the filmmaker to obtain financing to tackle her next fiction film, Anna’s encounters.

Now Filmin offers a cycle dedicated to the director Chantal Akermanwhich includes restored versions of twelve titles, including Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Brusselswhich heads the cycle, in addition to its debut short film, Saute ma ville (1968), or titles as significant as Me you him her (1974) or the one mentioned, Anna’s encounters.

Filmin dedicates a cycle to the director Chantal Akerman.

Women and cinema

For many, this list is simple entertainment, an anecdote without more. But for many others, This new list headed by Akerman’s work means a lot. It finally means emergence of women’s voices in the sector, recognized globally and it means renewal and modernity.

to the movie Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Brussels It is followed by masterpieces such as Vertigoin second place, Citizen Kane by Orson Welles, Tales from Tokyo by Yasuhiro Ozu, and a novelty, In the mood for love by Wong Kay Wai, in fifth place. Parasites by Bong Joon ho is ranked 90th. And a Spanish woman is ranked 84th, The spirit of the hive by Victor Erice.

Suffocating everyday life

Akerman’s film shows 200 minutes in the life of this widow who lives with her teenage sonthree days, and that he has found in the methodical routine of domestic tasks an order capable of hiding his anxieties.

She gets up in the morning, makes the coffee, gets her son up, shops, washes the dishes, cooks, prepares the table, makes the bed, and so on every day… But there is something out of the ordinary that happens in the morning. afternoons, but which the protagonist does with the same precision, leaving the viewer stunned.

Still from the film by Chantal Akerman.

At a certain time he receives a client, takes him to his room and in the time it takes for some potatoes to cook, he has sex for money.

The director films the scene in real time, with the camera fixed, holding the shots for the duration of the action, sequence shot. It is cinema in its purest form, which subjects the viewer to a sensation of vital suffocation.

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