No Home Movie

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No Home Movie
No Home Movie.jpg
Film poster
Directed byChantal Akerman
Written byChantal Akerman
Produced byChantal Akerman
Patrick Quinet
Serge Zeitoun
StarringChantal Akerman
Natalia Akerman
CinematographyChantal Akerman
Edited byClaire Atherton
Liaison Cinématographique
Paradise Films
Distributed byZeugma Films (France)
Release dates
  • 10 August 2015 (2015-08-10) (Locarno)
  • 24 February 2016 (2016-02-24) (France)
Running time
115 minutes

No Home Movie is a French-Belgian 2015 documentary film directed by Chantal Akerman, focusing on conversations between the filmmaker and her mother just months before her mother's death. The film premiered at the Locarno Film Festival on 10 August 2015. It is Akerman's last film.[1]


The documentary consists of conversations in person and over Skype between Akerman and her mother, Natalia, who was a survivor of Auschwitz.[2] Halfway through the film, Akerman cuts to a succession of traveling shots of a desert, which "cleave(s) the movie in two."[3]


Filming ran several months. Her mother died shortly after filming ended, at the age of 86, in April 2014. Akerman whittled down around forty hours' worth of footage to 115 minutes; she used small handheld cameras and her BlackBerry to film. "I think if I knew I was going to do this, I wouldn’t have dared to do it," she said.[2] Akerman died on 5 October 2015 in Paris. Le Monde reported that she committed suicide.[4]


The film premiered in the United States at the New York Film Festival on 7 October 2015, where it was described as "an extremely intimate film but also one of great formal precision and beauty, one of the rare works of art that is both personal and universal, and as much a masterpiece as her 1975 career-defining Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles."[5] One scene, in particular, where the two "sit at the kitchen table, eating potatoes that Ms. Akerman has prepared, telling her mother that even she, the peripatetic artist, has mastered a few domestic skills" is, one New York Times reviewer suggested, "a reference to a memorable potato-peeling scene" from Jeanne.[6]


  1. ^ Debruge, Peter (10 August 2015). ""Film Review: No Home Movie"". Variety. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  2. ^ a b Rapold, Nicolas (5 August 2015). ""Chantal Akerman Takes Emotional Path in Film About 'Maman'"". The New York Times. Retrieved 24 November 2015.
  3. ^ Dargis, Manohla (31 March 2016). "Review: 'No Home Movie,' of Love and Melancholy". The New York Times. Retrieved 4 April 2016.
  4. ^ Regnier, Isabelle (6 October 2015). "La cinéaste Chantal Akerman est morte". Le Monde (in French). Retrieved 6 October 2015.
  5. ^ Main Slate: No Home Movie, The Film Society of Lincoln Center, 2015, retrieved 24 November 2015
  6. ^ Donadio, Rachel (25 March 2016). "The Director's Director: Chantal Akerman". The New York Times. Retrieved 26 March 2016.

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