Agnès Varda: Gleaning Truths

Revered for her bold political and autobiographically inspired work, Agnès Varda is a seminal feminist filmmaker and matriarch of French Cinema. Her influential career began in the 1950s with La Pointe Courte – often considered the first film of the New Wave – and has spanned seven decades with no sign of slowing down as she enters her 90th year.

Given her recent bestowal of the Academy Honorary Award for Outstanding Contribution to Cinema, now seems the perfect time to celebrate one of the most pioneering feminist filmmakers of all time with an extensive nationwide programme of screenings, events, as well as critical engagement across several mediums and platforms.

The Gleaning Truths programme presents with brand new digital restorations of eight of Agnès Varda’s best-known films, showing In cinemas and On demand.

Watch Gleaning Truths collection On demand



Cleo from 5-7

Cleo from 5-7 (1962) (PG)

Agnès Varda's skilfully captures Paris at the height of the 60s in this intriguing tale expertly presented in real time about a singer whose life is in turmoil as she awaits a test result from a biopsy.

As Cléo readies herself to meet with her doctor she meets several friends and strangers, and grapples with her idea of her own mortality.

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Jacquot de Nantes

Jacquot de Nantes (1991) (PG)

Jacquot de Nantes tells the story of a child and his obsession of pursuing his dream to become a filmmaker.

How he buys his first camera, shoots his first amateur film which marks the beginning of one of the most prestigious careers of any French director: Jacques Demy.

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La Pointe Courte

La Pointe Courte (1955) (PG)

Anticipating the style and attitude of the New Wave, Agnès Varda’s directorial debut remains as fresh and original as the day it was made.

Set in a declining Mediterranean fishing village, the film portrays both the complex relationship between a married couple, exceptionally played by Silvia Monfort and Philippe Noiret, and the economic difficulties facing the wider community.

Remarkably assured and insightful, the film bears the realist approach, social comment and filmmaking flair that would become Varda’s hallmarks.

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Le Bonheur

Le Bonheur (1965) (15)

In one of Agnès Varda's more provocative films, she presents us with the dilemma faced by husband and father Francois (Jean-Claude Drouot) who finds himself falling in love with an attractive postal worker.

What follows is a detailed study of adult fidelity and happiness, which will ultimately end with major repercussions for all parties involved.

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L'Une Chante, l'Autre Pas

L'Une Chante, l'Autre Pas (1977) (12A)

Agnès Varda focuses on the intertwined lives of two women brought together during the struggle of the women's movement in 1970s France.

This subject that remains all too familiar with Varda who was personally involved with the movement.

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The Beaches of Agnès

The Beaches of Agnès (2008) (18)

Agnès Varda returns to beaches, which have been important to her since her childhood as she would travel to the seaside every Easter and summer, using her early memories of the coast as a springboard for the film’s meditation on her youth.

Weaving photography, archive footage, scenes from her own films and present-day sequences, Varda takes us on a memorable voyage through her life, during which she confronts the joy of creation and the pain of personal loss, death and ageing.

It is a singular trip played out against the stirring backdrop of the post-war explosion of cultural expression in France. She knew everyone: the French New Wave set, the Black Panthers and even Jim Morrison, who would visit Agnès when he was in Paris.

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The Gleaners and I

The Gleaners and I (2000) (U)

In 2000, Agnès Varda travelled the French countryside to study the world of foragers and scavengers called The Gleaners. Describing herself as a gleaner of ideas and images from interior as well as exterior journeys gives the director a special connection with her subjects in this honest and intriguing documentary.

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Vagabond (1985) (15)

Sandrine Bonnaire won a Best Actress César for her portrayal as Mona - a young and defiant drifter in this tragic story.

Using a largely non-professional cast, Agnès Varda’s splintered portrait of the enigmatic woman is told through flashbacks of those who encountered her.

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