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Friday, June 6, 2008

VAGABOND (1985)

Agnes Varda is such a naturally gifted filmmaker that watching her subvert her talents in expiration-dated didactic tales stuffed with half-digested socio-politico tracts and deconstructionist tendencies can be depressing. Personal penance for being married to that master of the frivolous Jacques Demy? Nonetheless, this episodic study of the last weeks in the life of a handsome, young & fiercely independent female drifter -- told in flashback with break-the-fourth-wall commentary from those she met – is brilliantly wrought and tough as nails. (It also serves as counterweight to Sean Penn ’s delusional/self-centered INTO THE WILD.)

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