Opening 31 May 2018
Experienced director Agnès Varda and street photographer JR combine forces to tour France on the search for interesting people to photograph. They bring all the necessary equipment to take pictures, which they enlarge to fit the wall of a three-story house, for example, as an open-air portrait gallery. In this way they temporarily project photos of residents in their own home area for all to see. There is Jeannine, the last person to still live in her housing settlement scheduled to be torn down, or Nathalie, an artist in a village. We meet Pony-Soleil-Air Sauvage-Nature, a hermit who has never had a job, but makes art out of thousands of bottle caps, which he collects. There is a passenger in a tractor, a girl sitting under a hat and an umbrella, a fish on a tower, goats without horns, a bunker falling off of a cliff.
All are fascinating, but most interesting are 89 minutes of Varda and JR talking to each other, agreeing on plans, suggesting new ideas. Agnés Varda is an 88-year-old professional, making perhaps her last film, and referring to the good old days when she worked with director Jean-Luc Godard. JR is in his mid-thirties; he never reveals his real name, nor takes off his sun glasses. Hard to believe, but they are a perfect couple and the real stars of the film, which won several prizes including in Cannes and Vancouver festivals, as well as an Oscar nomination for best documentary, all in 2017. (Becky Tan)