Les Plages d'Agnès

France 2008, Feature film, Documentary, 110' | Director, Screenplay Agnès Varda | DoP Alain Sakot, Hélène Louvart, Arlene Nelson | Editor Jean-Baptiste Morin, Baptiste Fillioux | Sound Olivier Goinard | Music Joanna Bruzdowicz, Stéphane Vilar, Paule Cornet

If the inner lives of people could be assigned landscapes, then Agnès Varda would choose a landscape of beaches. Beaches have many times characterised the life and work of the 80-year-old director, and from here she consistently invents her very personal search for her own memories. We learn about her childhood in Belgium and about Paris during the occupation, about her professional beginnings as a photographer, the 60s, in which she became a leading figure of the Nouvelle Vague, about her life with Jacques Demy, her travels to Cuba, China and to the USA, and her work as an independent producer.

Furnished with numerous film extracts and photo material, a mixture of documentary, autobiographical construct and imaginative image mosaic has resulted which is simply enchanting, due to its lightness and naturalness.


AGNÈS VARDA was born in 1928 in Brussels to a French mother and Greek father, and grew up in Provence. She made her first film when she was 26, La Pointe Courte. In 1961, her film Cléo – from 5 to 7, came out, which won the French Critics Award. In 1965, Le Bonheur was made, a film with a strongly feminist perspective, which was awarded the Special Prize of the Jury at the Berlinale. In 1967, she was involved in the documentation Far From Vietnam, along with Claude Lelouch, Jean-Luc Godard and Chris Marker, one of the first films to take a critical look at the Vietnam war. In 1969, Lions Love was made, in which Andy Warhol and Jim Morrison appear, among others. Apart from experimental feature films, Varda turned her attention in the 70s to documentations such as Black Panthers (shot in 1968 on a trip to America), Daguerrotypes (1975), Réponses des femmes (1975) and Ulysse (1981). For the last two films she won a César in the category Best Short Documentary. In 1985, her film Vagabond won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival. In 1987, she made Jane B. by Agnes V., an unusual film portrait about Jane Birkin. The Gleaners & I was distinguished in 2001 by the Los Angeles Film Critics Association as Best Documentary. Varda is a professor for Film and Documentary Film at the European Graduate School in Saas-Fee, Switzerland. Varda was married to film director Jacques Demy from 1962 to his death in 1990. As a homage to him, in 1991 she filmed his screenplay, Jacquot de Nantes.

Agnès Varda, Agnes Varda
Feature Film, Documentary