French Filmmaker Agnés Varda in Chicago, October of 2015
Photo credit: Joe Arce of Starstruck Foto for HollywoodChicago.com
Arlette “Agnés” Varda was born in Brussels, Belgium, and through her French mother applied to the Sorbonne (University of Paris) shortly after World War II, gaining a degree in literature and psychology. Continuing her education in art history, she turned to photography before becoming a voice in Left Bank Cinema and the French New Wave. Her debut film was 1954’s “La Pointe Courte,” which she built from still images of her photographs.
Her career built from there, as her follow feature
The Beaches of Agnès (Agnès Varda)
One week ago today we learned the news of cinematic pioneer Agnès Varda’s passing. Along with countless heartfelt appreciations, a few services are making it easier to see her films, namely Mubi. They are currently streaming a trio of her works: The Beaches of Agnès, Jacquot De Nantes, and Salut Les Cubains. Today we’re spotlighting her 2008 documentary, which takes a playful, emotional look at her upbringing and filmmaking career in a deeply personal way. – Jordan R.
Where to Stream: Mubi (free for 30 days)
Drift (Helena Wittmann)
A few minutes into Helena Wittmann’s Drift, two young ladies sit at
The film world lost a legendary figure on Friday morning, when it was announced that Agnès Varda had died.
The news sparked an immense outpouring of support, and it seemed as if many of the tributes were unified by a sense of boundary-breaking inspiration. Varda said that she always “wanted to make people see deeply,” that she didn’t want “to show people things, but to give people the desire to see,” and the response to her passing seems to prove that she was successful in her mission.
This week’s question: How did Agnès Varda inspire you?
Ken Bakely (@kbake_99), Freelance for Film Pulse
Though I’m unfortunately not as well-versed with Varda’s work as the many others who have written more extensive or personal tributes, what’s clear to
“The director and artist Agnes Varda died at her home on the night of Thursday, March 29, of complications from cancer,” Varda’s family said in a statement to the Afp. “She was surrounded by her family and friends,” the family said in a statement.”
The Cannes Film Festival tweeted Friday, “Immense sadness. For almost 65 years, Agnès Varda’s eyes and voice embodied cinema with endless inventiveness.
The lineup features 23 diverse films, comprised of highlights from international festivals and works by both established favorites and talented newcomers. The series runs from March 1 – 12.
Read More: Rendez-Vous with French Cinema Exclusive Trailer: Annual Series Celebrates the Very Best in Contemporary French Cinema
Ahead, check out the 6 titles and events we are most excited to check out at this year’s screening series.
Screwball comedy master Ernst Lubitsch took a rare stab at straight drama with 1932’s “Broken Lullaby,
Agnès Varda is to receive an honorary Palme d’or at the 68th Cannes Film Festival (May 13-24).
The French filmmaker will the first female director to be given the honour. Previously, only Woody Allen, in 2002, Clint Eastwood, in 2009, and Bernardo Bertolucci, in 2011, have been granted this distinction.
“And yet my films have never sold as much as theirs,” she said of following in their footsteps with her well-known sense of humour.
The award is given by the festival’s board of directors to renowned directors whose works have achieved a global impact but who have never won Cannes’ top prize - the Palme d’or.
Varda, 86, is a photographer, writer, actress, director and visual artist.
She studied photography and learned the ropes at the Avignon Festival, where she was
As Guest Artistic Director, Varda has selected films that have inspired her throughout her six-decade career: Pickpocket (Dir Robert Bresson, 1959), A Woman Under The Influence (Dir John Cassavetes, 1974), The Marriage Of Maria Braun (Dir Rainer Werner Fassbinder, 1979) and After Hours (Dir Martin Scorsese, 1985). In addition, the festival will be screening a selection of Varda’s films, including restored versions of Cleo From 5 To 7 (CLÉO De 5 À 7) and Documenteur.
Agnès Varda, wife and creative companion of film-maker Jacques Demy (who died of Aids in 1990), was the token female film-maker of the French new wave, with which she was peripherally associated, though she was closer to Alain Resnais and Chris Marker. She has asserted her role as a significant figure in French cinema both through her own movies, her beautiful commemorative picture about her late husband (Jacquot de Nantes) and her wonderful autobiographical The Beaches of Agnès. Cléo from 5 to 7, her exquisite debut feature, a considerable international art house success, centres on a couple of late afternoon hours in the drifting life of a somewhat vacuous Parisian singer (Corinne Marchand) as she examines her life while anxiously awaiting a vital medical verdict. It's a beguiling, slightly indulgent work, featuring a film-within-a-film starring Jean-Luc Godard and Anna Karina. Photographed by Jean Rabier, Claude Chabrol's regular cameraman, with music by Michel Legrand,
Editor's note: "The Beaches of Agnes" opens in a limited run in New York and L.A. this week for Academy Award consideration. If you reside on either coast, do yourself a favor and run, don't walk, to "Beaches."
Agnès Varda Hits the Beach
Born in Belgium in 1928, Agnès Varda is renowned for being the only female member of France’s legendary “Nouvelle Vague” (which also includes such luminaries as Francois Truffaut, Jean-Luc Godard, and Varda’s late husband, Jacques Demy) school of filmmaking when, in 1954, she formed a film company called Cine-Tamaris for her first feature, La Pointe Courte. It earned her the title of “Grand Mother of the French New Wave,” at the tender age of 26.
Varda has made 33 films since then, alternating between shorts and features, fiction and documentaries. Some of her most famous titles include Cleo from 5 to 7
Varda directed her first feature, La Pointe Courte, in 1954, with no formal training in filmmaking. The movie has often been identified as the film that started the French New Wave ("and a famous flop,
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