235) Beaches of Agnes (2008) Dir: Agnes Varda Date Released: June 2009 Date Seen: August 1st, 2009 Rating: 3.75/5
For me, Beaches of Agnes, my first exposure to the work of accomplished French New Wave dabbler Agnes Varda, recalled the hesitation I have reconciling formal and stylistic experimentation in even her contemporaries' best films. Full of disarming warmth and charm, Varda's presents her past as an ostentatious, polymorphous series of puzzle pieces that can never be truly reconciled into a coherent picture.
Despite my initial reticence, Varda's vital zeal and creative energy persistently silences the qualms I have with the pretense and belabored intellectual navel-gazing that pervades much of the film and the defining movement that her career has become defined by. There's something vexing and wonderful about her self-portrait, one of the best signs that I'm looking at the work of a real artiste.