List Item: Watch all of the “1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die”
Progress: 822/1007Title: De man die zijn haar kort liet knippen (The Man Who Had His Hair Cut Short)
Director: André Delvaux
There isn’t much in the way of Belgian cinema on the list. For whatever reason the compilers don’t didn’t include anything by the Dardenne brothers, so it’s either this film of Man Bites Dog. Both rather different films, but I know that I would rather see the latter again before seeing this one.
I can only see one reason for the inclusion of The Man Who Had His Hair Cut Short on the 1001 list – in order to get a film by André Delvaux on the list as he is a key figure in the world of Belgian cinema. Being an early film of his, as well as one enjoyed by French film magazine Cahiers du Cinéma, it makes sense that this would be the one included.
Being a film from the Flanders region of Belgium, therefore they speak a varient of Dutch, it was nice to have my husband back me up with actual language knowledge that the dialogue in this film felt stilted. This transfers a lot to the acting and how the film is paced.
At times it is semi dreamy and it’s meant to have an element of magic realism – but it just ends up spending too long in places and too long on things where I am not sure how important it is. Like the hair-cutting scene in the beginning – it feels like that was included in its entirety just to help the title of the film (also the title of the original book) make sense. I mean watching it was ASMR o’clock for me, but it really added nothing to the film.
Honestly, it’s been a while since I watched a film around the 90 minute mark where I felt so many of the minutes passing out of my life. As a story of a teacher who falls for a student, moves away to stay away from temptation and then has a psychotic break after witnessing an autopsy and bumping into her as an adult – this should have been compelling. There is an excellent story buried in here – just buried too far down to be of interest to me.