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FROM THE OTHER SIDE

France / Belgium, 2002 (MIFF 2003, Documentaries)

Director: Chantal Akerman

Chantal Akerman's haunting new documentary focuses on the plight of Mexican workers and their attempts to cross the US border and forge a better life 'on the other side'.

Akerman sets the story in the twin towns of Agua Prieta, Mexico and Douglas, Arizona, USA. In Agua Prieta, she interviews those inhabitants whose desire to improve their lot in life requires them to risk their lives by crossing an unforgiving desert. Their fears and aspirations, anxieties and dreams are crystallised in heartbreaking accounts. In Douglas, the residents, both the police and ordinary citizens alike, express concern that the illegal immigrants pose a terrorist and health threat—ranchers even willingly turn a blind eye to the law and shoot Mexican trespassers.

With her trademark style of employing long tracking sequences and extended static shots, Akerman alternates vistas of astonishing beauty with penetrating tales to reinforce the stalemate that exists between the two very different countries.

See also...

GOLDEN EIGHTIES (PG)

Belgium, France, 1986
“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 fr… More »

PIERROT LE FOU (M)

France, 1965
“I saw Pierrot le fou by chance… I decided to make movies the same night.” - filmmaker Chantal Akerman. ... Marking a transition between Jean-Luc Godard's earlier works and his later more … More »

THE MEETINGS OF ANNA

Belgium/France/West Germany, 1978
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 Akerm… More »

ALL ONE NIGHT

France, 1982
lmages of night and images of love are ... interwoven with each other, couples ... meet and separate, fragments of life are ... captured in short scenes. They don't tell ... a story, and yet, they te… More »

THE EIGHTIES

Belgium, 1983
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 »

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