“I was filming this postcard, and my camera went [to my hand], and I thought instead of saying my hands are old with spots, I said, it’s a beautiful landscape. And in a way, it’s a way of being a filmmaker that my own age becomes a landscape.”
One Hundred and One Nights, all soft edges and winsomeness, is a nice little movie, maddeningly so. The cinema has written enough love letters to itself; it could use more anonymous threats, bricks through its window, and flaming turds on its porch.
One Sings may ultimately be gentle in its politics, but Varda could probably never make a truly mainstream film: her artistry is too exquisitely singular, too intrigued by moments out of time and the unspoken words between people that can only be expressed through abstraction.
Though Varda already was a highly experienced photographer and thus no stranger to the art of image-making, her lack of cinephile knowledge at this early period in her life helps make La Pointe Courte not only authentically personal but also singular.
In selecting the subject of our latest director symposium, we alighted upon a figure of constant surprise, of reinvention, of charm and oddity and intellectual freedom. She is one of the most thrillingly alive filmmakers working today, and she is 88.