Oscar History

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Entries in French New Wave (9)

Mar 29 2019

RIP Agnès Varda

by Anne Marie Kelly

Acclaimed godmother of the French New Wave and belated Honrary Oscar award-winner Agnès Varda passed away this Friday of breast cancer at 90 years old.The film community is in mourning for a singular and pioneering visionary,who treated film as art and famously declared that she refused to watch movies before embarking on her own career.In spite,or perhaps because,of this fact,Varda would go on to create incredible works across multiple genres and decades,creating unforgettable films that were personal,political,comedic,deeply poignant expressions of a spirit that never ceased being fascinated by the world around her.

We at Team Experience have long been fans of Varda,including herearly work,famous films,late-career documentaries,and herunbelievableoffscreenappearancesas well.Her brusque presence and iconic style was a fixture at film festivals,where she had time for fans but never for praise.She will be missed.

What are your favorite Varda moments?What are you watching in her honor?

Nov 06 2017

Honorary Oscars: Agnès Varda's Cléo from 5 to 7亚博主页

We're revisiting work from this year's Honorary Oscar winners.Here'sSalimon Agnès Varda...

What's good?

When most people look back on the French New Wave,it's unconsciously seen as a boys' club,especially of the Cahiers du Cinéma clan with Godard and Truffaut.That's unfortunate when a chapter in film history feels marginalizing and the masculinity in the French New Wave movement can end up nondescript.Much thanks for Agnès Varda then,representing both the literary Left Bank wing of the French New Wave and the feminine voice she brought to the fray.

While her directorial debutLa Pointe Courtepredates and even informs much of the French New Wave proper,Cléo from 5 to 7is essentially the work that broke that glass ceiling and introduced a new sort of perspective into the one of the most radical movements in film history.

And the brilliant thing is how unassumingCléo from 5 to 7is about these things.Not TOO relaxed,mind you...

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Aug 16 2017

Bonnie & Clyde's 50th Anniversary

by Eric Blume

It's difficult to believe that it's fifty years this month that Arthur Penn's 1967 classicBonnie & Clydedebuted in theaters.On one hand,it's been part of the American film imagination for so long,that it's been colossally influential on many other movies.Yetevery time you watch it,it feels as fresh,vital,and new as if it were just shot.

Surprisingly,the movie starts with Faye Dunaway's Bonnie behind bars… holding onto the bars of the headboard of her bed...

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Mar 17 2017

On this day: False Maria,Party Monster,and the French New Wave

On this day in history as it relates to showbiz...

Stephen Boyd,Sophia Loren,and Alec Guinness in THE FALL OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE (1964)

190 BCMarucs Arelius,the Emperor of Rome,dies.Was he assassinated?That's the suspicion in most Hollywood accounts.He's been played by Alec Guiness (The Fall of the Roman Empire) and Richard Harris (Gladiator)
1906Character actor of big and small screen Michael O'Shea,who later married Virginia Mayo,is born...

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Jun 25 2015

Women's Pictures - Agnes Varda's The Gleaners And I

At the 2013 AFI Fest,Agnes Varda told her audience that if one really wanted to understand her,they should look to her documentaries.Varda made documentaries throughout her career,interspersed with shorts and features,on a variety of subjects.Her best-known documentary was 2000'sThe Gleaners and I,an examination of France's cultural history of "gleaning,"in all the word's definitions.There are crop gleaners who follow the harvest,protected by French law,and immortalized in art.There are urban gleaners who pick through trash to find food or art or inspiration.And of course,there is Varda the filmmaker,gleaning what truths about life that she can from her interview subjects,while also turning her digital camera on herself.What follows is a complex documentary that - like its director/subject - has many definitions and perspectives.

The film opens with Varda introducing her viewers to the romantic image of gleaners they're probably most familiar with - a series of paintings depicting gleaning as a noble,if backbreaking,labor.Varda quickly dismisses that halcyon image by introducing the viewers to modern day gleaners - thrifty,poor men and women stuffing potatoes or oysters or apples into plastic bags and pails.A different film would have stayed with these homeless folks on the fringes of society,but Varda doesn't dwell solely on their poverty.This is a film about people,and Varda finds some fascinating examples - chefs,anarchists,lawyers,teachers,and artists,of course.

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Jun 04 2015

Women's Pictures: Agnes Varda's La Pointe Courte

When Agnes Varda was honored at Cannes in May,a lot of titles were tossed around: Ancestor of the French New Wave,New Wave's Godmother/Mother/etc.But I began to wonder: how accurate are those titles?Can we safely lump Agnes Varda,photographer-cum-director-cum-documentarian,into the French New Wave boys club?After all,the New Wave conjurs very specific images: detached Frenchmen smoking cigarettes in black and white,long takes,jarring edits,staged closeups and jazz soundtracks.Does this mesh with our dimunitive director?

More seriously,the French New Wave represents a specific group of radical individuals.They were cinephiles and critics whose radical new ideas came from a love of film,and a conscious decision to reject classical cinema.Varda,by contrast,freely admits that she'd almost never seen a film before her 1955 debut,La Pointe Courte.So is she New Wave?Ur-New Wave?In parallel or in contrast?I don't have the answers yet,I just have a Hulu+ account and some books on French Film. It's going to be a hell of a month.

La Pointe Courteis an improbable film debut.

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