french films > The Beaches of Agnès

The Beaches of Agnès

The Beaches of Agnes

The Beaches of Agnès

Review score: * * * * *

cast: Agnes Varda

year: 2008

colour: yes

certificate: 18

director: Agnès Varda

runtime: 110

'If you opened people up, you would find landscapes; if you opened me up, you would find beaches. Many old people wish to tell their life. As an old filmmaker, with the enthusiasm and energy of my youth, I tried to find a style and a form to tell my memories, my encounters, the ups and downs of my life. I shot my film as a kaleidoscope, a collage, a fantasy.’ Agnès Varda For more than five decades, Varda has been making short and feature films, documentaries and video installations, and even before that she was a photographer. Awarded the sobriquet of Grandmother of the French New Wave, her professional career included such films as Cleo from 5 to 7, Jacquot de Nantes, Vagabonde and The Gleaners and I. Now, in what she says will be her last film, she turns her camera on herself, returning to the beaches which have played such a significant part in her life to create a ‘sort of auto-filmo-documentary’. Placing herself amongst extracts from her films, and images and interviews recalling her past, she has fashioned a humorous and illuminating account of her creative work, her life with Jacques Demy, her feminism and her family life. Amidst an abundance of rich material one image encapsulates the courage and independence of this remarkable woman: Agnès, single-handedly helming a small sail boat along the Seine, as the Eiffel Tower looms in the background.


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