One Sings, the Other Doesn’t (L’une chante, l’autre pas) 15

8pm Monday 23 July
Shown as part of the Revolt, She Said: Women and Film after ’68 tour, with an introduction by Selena Robertson of Club des Femmes.

DIRECTOR Agnès Varda
CAST Thérèse Liotard, Valérie Mairesse, Ali Rafie, Robert Dadiès

Spanning more than a decade, Agnès Varda’s enchanting ode to female friendship and liberation is part blissed-out bohemian musical, part revolutionary cri de coeur.

Charting the personal and political changes in two French women’s lives from the early 1960s to the mid ‘70s, this is a joyous feminist anthem for the right to choose in all things. The women are very different – Pauline sings, travelling the country to perform feminist songs, while Suzanne (who doesn’t sing) runs a women’s health clinic – but their friendship continues as their lives change. A deeply personal film for Agnès Varda, it combines elements of a musical (with lyrics written by the director herself) with her usual blend of fiction and documentary.
(1977 France 104 mins Subtitled)

One Sings, the Other Doesn’t: It has to be one of the more perfect movie titles out there. A balance of opposites, of a yin and a yang, it captures the reality that these very different women are in fact alike. The film spans fourteen years, switching back and forth between their stories. Pauline and Suzanne both fight for self-fulfillment, living divergent lives and usually meeting only at times of tragedy or monumental change, but exchanging letters in between. Their bond is described as “an imaginary dialogue punctuated with postcards” — a poetic evocation of just how emotionally sustaining such a connection can be even from a distance … The film is a breath of fresh air for simultaneously channeling radical attitudes and evading wallowing in bitter or toxic scenarios. In their various bids for freedom, Varda’s women are not punished.  Carmen Gray, Village Voice

Language: French

BBFC advice: Contains one use of strong language, moderate nudity and sex references
Detailed advice from the BBFC (click on insight)

icocdfWith the support of the Independent Cinema Office and BFI, awarding funds from The National Lottery.