|Overpraised, but worthwhile.
Directed by Agnès Varda
Produced by Georges de Beauregard and Carlo Ponti
Written by Agnès Varda
Starring Corinne Marchand, Antoine Bourseiller and Dominique Davray
Plot Summary: Cléo (Marchand), an unwell singer, wonders around Paris for a day, awaiting an appointment with her doctor.
Significance: Considered one of the best French films of all time, this film was featured in the latest Sight and Sound Poll (#202 in 2012 critics' poll and #546 in the directors' one). Also, the film was nominated for the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival, and it won Best Film from the French Syndicate of Cinema Critics.
Thoughts: Varda's film is so small-scale that it's really a little gem, which has managed to grow in reputation over the years. It's a charming movie, but its elevated status makes for lofty expectations. While I was slightly disappointed, the film is worthy of some of the praise. Marchand is terrific as Cléo, delivering a sublime performance of real charm and emotion. Despite the melancholic aspects of film dealing with Cléo's illness, it still has a loose, breezy makeup, and the chapters of Cléo's day are a nice storytelling device. The film manages to be fun and dramatic, making the whole experience quite interesting. It might not be the very best from its stunning year, but the movie is definitely worth a look for movie fans.