Winner of the highest honor for documentary filmmaking at the 2017 Cannes International Film Festival, philosophical travelogue Faces Places is the latest from eighty-nine-year-old Left Bank luminary, Agnès Varda (Cleo From 5 to 7, The Beaches of Agnes). At the peak of her artistic and intellectual powers, but on the verge of losing her eyesight, Varda teams up with young photographer and muralist JR. Traveling from the misty coal-mining communities of the north to the sunny agrarian south, they document the diverse cultural and architectural landscapes of France’s vanishing villages, leaving behind ephemeral, large-scale portraits that create tangible links between individuals and the places they call home. An apt if unlikely duo, inquisitive, warm-hearted Agnès and laconic, watchful JR—a dead-ringer for Varda’s fellow surviving French New Wave auteur, Jean-Luc Godard (who makes a revealing not-quite-cameo in the film’s closing minutes)—develop a charming rapport that becomes increasingly moving as the film progresses.
Director Agnès Varda and JR | 2017 | In French with English subtitles | 89 minutes | PG | DCP