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THE MEETINGS OF ANNA

Belgium / France / West Germany, 1978 (MIFF 1979)

Director: Chantal Akerman

In 1975, Chantal Akerman made Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles, and since then, she has been in the forefront of a developing feminist cinema. Les rendez-vous d'Anna continues her investigation of both narrative and avant-garde cinematic forms.

Anna, a filmmaker, travels around Europe showing a film she has made. We see nothing of Anna's film — Akerman only tells of her wanderings, her chance encounters, conversations, reflections.

In Germany, she meets Heinnch, a teacher, who likes her film, and they spend a night together. He tells her the story of his life: his father died at Stalingrad in the war; his marriage broke up when his wife left him for a Turkish worker, and now, he and his small daughter live with his mother.

At a railway station, Anna runs into a woman who is the mother of a man she once almost married. The woman asks her again to marry her son, and when she refuses, accuses her of not caring about marriage or family. The woman also talks about her memories — of the Jews in war time, of Poland and Belgium, of the changing role of women. Anna's mother calls her back to Brussels, to watch over her father's sick-bed. Her mother, too, has a story to tell — this brings the two women closer together.

A conversation with a man on a train reiterates the film's theme of restlessness and displacement. The man tells her about his search for a country in which he can settle down. Returning to Paris, Anna picks up an old relationship with a man, but finds him disappointing and leaves him.

Arriving home, Anna listens to telephone messages recorded on her automatic answering machine. She makes plans to continue travelling with her film.

See also...

THE MEETINGS OF ANNA

In 1975, Chantal Akerman made Jeanne Dielrnan, 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles, and since then, she has been in the forefront of a developing feminist cinema. Les rendez-vous d'Anna Chantal ... More »

PINA BAUSCH

The film follows the dance group of Pina Bausch in Germany, Italy and Avignon in France during her most recent European tour. It shows the working atmosphere, the presentation, the intense ... More »

MAN WITH A SUITCASE

Akerman's Man With a Suitcase, starring herself, is an unexpected mixture of Chaplinesque comedy and poignant self-mockery. ... Returning home to write a film script and desperately needing the ... More »

THE EIGHTIES

The Melbourne Him Festival has been showing Chantal Akerman's highly original and demanding films regularly over the years ("Jeanne Dielrnan", "Les Rendezvous D'Anna", "Toute Une Nuit",) with varying ... More »

GOLDEN EIGHTIES (PG)

“Like Jacques Demy on speed.” - Time Out ... Chantal Akerman's candy-coloured musical is set entirely in a Parisian shopping mall, in an unashamed celebration of 80s French pop, young love and ... More »

PORTRAIT OF A YOUNG GIRL AT THE END OF THE 60S, IN BRUSSELS

Belgium's arbiter of minimalist chic, Chantal Akerman, takes a leisurely stroll through the capital, casting a casual but revealing glance at adolescent anxiety and unspoken love along the way ... More »

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