The Gleaners & I (2000)
November 15, 2022 10:54 AM - Subscribe

[TRAILER] An 1867 painting by Jean-Francois Millet inspired septuagenarian documentarian Agnes Varda to cross the French countryside to videotape people who scavenge. Taking everything from surplus in the fields, to rubbish in trashcans, to oysters washed up after a storm, the "gleaners" range from those sadly in need to those hoping to recreate the community activity of centuries past, and still others who use whatever they find to cobble together a rough art. Highlighted by Varda's amusing narration.

A French film by Agnes Varda.

93% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes.

Currently streaming in the US on Criterion, which has a free trial if you need it. JustWatch listing.

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posted by DirtyOldTown (4 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Pistols at dawn for anyone who tries to talk shit about Agnes Varda.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 11:00 AM on November 15, 2022 [6 favorites]

What a fun movie. It's a ramshackle, light and friendly sort of film, without sacrificing any substance. This movie made me think a lot about making art. Varda's craft as a moviemaker is impeccable -- she teaches me that you can get away with anything, if you have interesting thoughts to share. The dancing lens cap shot is a totally bonkers thing to put in any movie -- but you see it as wild and beautiful because by the time you're watching it onscreen, she's taught you to see it that way.
posted by Rinku at 12:38 PM on November 15, 2022 [7 favorites]

One of the best movies. Just one of the best movies! I especially remember her riffling around in discarded produce in the street - relatable! Also a good gateway drug to other Varda movies... I was listening to the Film Comment podcast about the Sight and Sound best films list and a guest seemed to be suggesting that Varda is like, now taking on some possibly problematic role as an acceptable member of the canon - not sure where they were going with that - I think basically saying it's mainstream to say Varda is a great now and not sure if that is somehow problematic but I may have misinterpreted from a very brief statement. But anyhow, I welcome Varda displacing some of the man-canon. Her movies have such humanism and are so easy to connect to - especially given how weird and specific they are! I have watched so many Godard movies (for her peer who has long been established as a 'genius') and go Godard but he is so prickly and and sharp and authoritative.
posted by latkes at 10:58 AM on November 17, 2022 [1 favorite]

So so good, we've been watching a lot of Varda recently and this so good. You can really see how the director who made Vagabond is the one who made this.
posted by Carillon at 9:03 PM on May 9

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