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Critics reviews
From the East
Chantal Akerman France, 1993
It’s among Ms. Akerman’s greatest films. A travelogue across the once-restricted post-Communist territory of Eastern Europe and Russia, it is a series of microdramas with the simplicity and freshness of the Lumière brothers’ earliest one-shot motion pictures.
April 15, 2016
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D’EST is in many ways much like an exhibition of stunning photographs or perhaps a meditative and somber Jacques Tati film; the scenes Akerman captures are at times so perfectly choreographed that its hard to believe they are not planned and orchestrated. Maybe this is just another of Akerman’s talents—the ability to compartmentalize the world into images both haunting and touching in equal measure.
November 13, 2009
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Someone looking at the film with a socio-historical bias might say [the people in the movie are] waiting to either be born into or die at the hands of the New World. The cumulative, seductively immersive effect of the movie, though, makes it seem as though they’re waiting for either Godot or for leaves to start sprouting out of their collective, human landscape.
October 21, 2009
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Concluding with a truncated traveling shot of yet another, seemingly ubiquitous public queue, the film reveals an intriguingly transitory and unresolved intrinsic reality: a haunted and indelible reflection of spiritual rootlessness and inertia in the wake of a crumbled ideology, human abandonment, and directionless revolution.
January 01, 2005
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Akerman’s penchant for finding Edward Hopper wherever she goes has never been more obvious; this travelogue seemingly offers vistas any alert tourist could find yet delivers a series of images and sounds that are impossible to shake later… Everyone goes to movies in search of events, but the extraordinary events in Akerman’s sorrowful, intractable film are the shots themselves—the everyday recorded by a powerful artist with an acute eye and ear.
January 20, 1994
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