Four restored films by Belgian director Chantal Ackerman will be screened for the first time in Bulgaria, as part of the Forever Young program - part of Meetings of Young European Cinema.

"This year marks the 50 years of Ackerman's first short film, Saute ma ville - 1968, which is only eighteen years old, and in which she herself participates. With it, he embarks on his rich creativity, in which he rejects the rules to create his own. From January to March, a large retrospective of her films took place at the French Film Library, which inspired me to show a small part of them in Sofia. Fortunately, the Embassy of the Kingdom of Belgium in Bulgaria has responded to the idea of ​​introducing the audience to this unusual creator! ”- says Ralitsa Asenova, the organizer of the festival.

movie shot: Set My City On Fire, 1968

We know that Ackermann was born in Brussels, that she came from a Jewish family fleeing the war, that she lived and worked in New York and Paris. "I couldn't live in Saint-Germain-des-Prés, I live in Menilmontan, a neighborhood with 89 nationalities!" She said.


We know that she had a hoarse voice, that she was fascinated by women, that Godard's film "Crazy Piero" was the flame that ignited the desire for cinema in her. The film was for her both a book and poetry. After the screening, fifteen-year-old Chantal shouted on the boulevard: "I want to make a movie! I want to make a movie! ”


We know about her that she experiments with the camera, with her ideas, with her body. So far no one in the field of cinema has been as honest as she is, as brave as she is, as sincere as she has been. We know that she is a feminist, to the point that she mocks the masculine behavior of her husband, imitating him herself in "I, you, he, she" ("Je, Tu, Il, Elle"), which will be shown at the festival. She was radical, she was not liked by everyone. Criticism was "for" and "against", but this fact is the eternal mark of innovation - the eternal war of the intellectual against conformism.

movie footage: I, you, he, her

We know a number of her experimental films, in which she often participates. During her time in the United States, she was in the midst of American experimental cinema. He studied briefly at the National Institute of Performing Arts, but quickly quit as he wanted to make movies. He made films over 40, co-starred in installations for the Venice Biennale, wrote books, became a leading director of a wave called "modern cinema."


In the avant-garde documentary News from Home (1977), part of the program of the festival, Ackerman shoots various places in New York, reading letters sent by her mother between 1971 and 1973 when the director lives there. Ackerman is capable of frankness, which is discouraging, and this is evident in this film.


The masterpiece of the Belgian director "Jana Dilman, 23 Targovska Street, Brussels 1080" will also be presented. Ackermann says he turns in bed once and sees the entire future film in just one minute. "I make art with a woman who washes dishes," jokes Ackermann. Starring Dolphin Seyrig, the actress who charmed Alain Rene, Marguerite Duras and Francois Truffaut. She is also an active figure in the struggle for women's rights. He signed Manifesto 343, an appeal to legalize abortion, banned in France in the XNUMXs. In "Jeanne Dillman" the banal everyday life is mixed with hyperrealism - a form that perfectly shows the metamorphosis of the heroine from housewife to extreme revolutionary.


In his work Chantal Ackerman explores the boundaries of loneliness, alienation, the hidden forms of despair, often hidden from a seemingly carefree and ordinary way of life. She's leaving, putting an end to her life, which is as if she's already predicted in her first movie influenced by Chaplin's silent movie.


Check out Chantal Ackerman's films between 18 and 24 June at the Odeon Cinema and Slaveikov Hall of the French Institute.

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