Jeanne Dielman, 23 Commerce Quay, 1080 Brussels – Movie Review (2018 FIFA World Cup™ Special Series)

Group G

russiawc2018

Info

Country: Belgium
Original Title: Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du commerce, 1080 Bruxelles
Director: Chantal Akerman
Release: 1975
Genre: Drama
Stream: Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles (English Subtitled)
Blu-Ray: Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles (The Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray]
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World Cup Historic

For quite some time now, is expected great things from the Belgium National Team, but they still didn’t deliver.

adidas Men’s Belgium Home Soccer Jersey (Medium) Vivid Red/Power Red/Bold Gold

The football in Belgium began as a way for members of the elite past their time, in 1863. In 1895 and 1896 the sport became more organized, after the formation of an Association responsible for various sports, including football and the subsequent formation of a football league.

In 1901 the first Belgian team was formed, but the matches weren’t recognized by FIFA because Belgium had four English players in their squad. For that reason, the first match considered as an official was a 3-3 draw against France, in 1904.

BelgiumNFT1901.jpg
1901 Belgium

Belgium was one of the European teams to be present in the first World Cup in Montevideo, but they lost the two matches in the group stage, 3-0 against the United States and 1-0 against Paraguay.

With 12 participations in the World Cup, going to the 13th, their longest absence in the tournament was from 1958 to 1966, missing three competitions in a row and the best streak of participation was from 1982 to 2002, with six participations in a row.

During these twenty years of presence in the tournament, the Belgian achieved their best performance, with a fourth place in 1982. They weren’t too bad in the last World Cup as well, reaching the Quarter-Finals and losing 1-0 against Argentina.

Vincent_Kompany_Simon_Mignolet_Kevin_De_Bruyne_vs_USA
Photo by Erik Drost

For this month’s World Cup, Belgium has an amazing squad with world-class talent in almost every sector of the pitch. Beginning with one of the best keepers today, Thibaut Courtois, and Kevin De Bruyne one of the best players in the world in any position.

The weakness of this team is the coach. Roberto Martínez is not very good, to be honest, his greatest achievement was one FA Cup with Wigan Athletic in the 2012-2013 season right after being relegated. Not just about getting titles, but his works are usually mediocre and now, with Belgium, he left Nainggolan, one important peace for the midfield, out of the squad because of personal issues.

In spite of Martínez, it is expected that the Belgium team reach at least Quarter-Finals, but regardless of the results, Belgium is an entertaining team to watch.

Prelude

Jeanne Dielman, 23 Commerce Quay, 1080 Brussels follows the trivial routine of Jeanne, a widow raising a teenage son and working on an occasional job.

Time to get political again and talk a little about Feminism.

Once I was watching a random video on YouTube and right in the beginning he says “You know I’m anti-feminism” and a little later added, “I’m in favor of equal rights for men and women…”. I stopped watching right there.

Feminist_Suffrage_Parade_in_New_York_City,_1912
Women’s Suffrage Parade in New York City, May 6, 1912 (from the Library of Congress)

The guy said he was “anti-feminism” and then said he was in favor of the exact definition of Feminism, that’s ignorance and with video evidence of his own stupidity.

I’m not saying I’m a specialist either, just that I’m not stupid enough to say I’m against something I don’t understand.

I think we should start with the term. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, Feminism is:

1. the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes;

2: organized activity on behalf of women’s rights and interests.

That’s it.

Louise_Weiss
Louise Weiss along with other suffragettes in 1935.

Feminism IS NOT equal to the actions of those who claim to be feminists. In addition to that, the actions of activists, and the activists themselves should not be judged as one and the same.

Talking about the actions, most forms of protest conveys its message in a symbolic way. For example, when the Black Panthers raised their fist, they meant something by that and we can say the same about feminist actions.

Some people love to criticize the women in topless in demonstrations, while completely ignoring the message that it’s conveying, that is, don’t matter what clothes the woman’s wearing, is not an excuse to rape or harassment.

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Jeanne Dielman (Delphine Seyrig) making the bed

Some people say feminism was only important in the past, but the truth is that even today the statistics show that violence against women still is a very serious issue.

In the 70s, society expected certain roles from women, like cooking, cleaning the house, taking care of the kids, etcetera. Some still think like that, but in the 70’s the oppression and the social pressure was much higher.

Chantal Akerman and the all-female crew made “Jeanne Dielman” amidst this oppressive moment, criticizing (in a way) this status quo. Does it mean I like the movie? No.

Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du commerce, 1080 Bruxelles

The widow Jeanne Dielman (Delphine Seyrig) lives a methodic routine life with her adolescent son, Sylvain (Jan Decorte). She cooks, takes a bath, cleans the house, and make the bed, sometimes she goes out to buy food, clothes or other things.

She has conversations with her son and her neighbor and every little piece of dialog have something to say about the gender relations at the time, and maybe even in today’s time.

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Jeanne Dielman (Delphine Seyrig)

We watch three days, everyone with the same routine, very little things change in Jeanne’s actions, but of course, every change means something as well. I only realized that these little changes in behavior meant something afterward.

When I watched, I already knew that Jeanne was a prostitute, so every time she took a man to her room and got paid after, I knew what was actually happening. To be honest, I don’t think it was supposed to be a surprise or a “twist”, that’s why I’m not putting a spoiler alert.

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Sylvain (Jan Decorte) and Jeanne (Delphine Seyrig)

The real problem is the 3 hours of movie with only her routine, making it the most boring movie that I have ever watched. Is not the worst movie I’ve seen, it’s not even the worst title I reviewed here (it’s The Mechanism), but is the most boring.

When people call a movie pretentious, is that kind of movie I imagine. When talking about hipster cinephiles who think is better than anyone who doesn’t like artsy movies or cult directors, I think of this kind of movie.

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Jeanne (Delphine Seyrig) waiting for a client

The importance of feminism is one thing, the quality of a feminist movie is another, and we have to separate the two things. The movie definitely has its merits but is way too boring. 3 Moons.

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Author: Marlon Santos

Random guy who loves movies and series, among other things.

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