What a delightful surprise. Francoise Hardy meets Rosetta, with Leonard Cohen's marvellous Suzanne and some casual philosophy thrown in for good measure. And with Chantal Akerman's sad passing, it's all the more poignant in its sense not only of fleeting youth and time but of loneliness too. Thank you, Chantal.
Simple, beautiful, and unpretentious. A day in the life of a a Belgian girl. A snapshot of a specific time, place, and set of emotions that cover everything from life, to love, to philosophy, to work and the status quo. It most poignantly captures the contradictions and conflicted emotions of youth. I loved every scene with music, and was glad that after she stole that Leonard Cohen record the music made a reprisal.
Such a pleasure to watch this during the current girlhood/girl power renaissance in film. Subtle, fat with dialogue, and good tunes--the last 5 minutes made me hold my breath. A partially autobiographical work, literary critic Judith Mayne has written awesome things about lesbian desire in Portrait: "what shapes the girl-meets-boy story is the simultaneous desire... to connect with another girl and to tell stories."