The poetic tension that links this wonderful collection of films by Agnès Varda is perfectly captured in the film's subtitle: when photos trigger films. Taking the still image as their subject, these three works overflow with Varda's gleeful inquisition, sharp sense of poetry, and sophisticated understanding of how meaning is created (evident in so much of her documentary work).
Ydessa, Les Ours Et Etc. /Ydessa, The Bears And Etc.
Agnès Varda, 44 mins, France, 2004
A response to Ydessa Hendeles's Teddy Bear Project - an art installation of hundreds of photographs featuring teddy bears - Varda (like her subject) marvels at the idyllic personal histories these photos attest to and how they frequently disguise an undercurrent of war and persecution.
Agnès Varda, 22 mins, France, 1983
Varda takes her 1954 photograph (featuring a naked man, a child and a dead goat at the seashore) as a starting point, and questions the veracity of it's mythological, historical and personal meanings.
Salut les Cubains
Agnès Varda, 30 mins, France, 1963
Four years after Fidel Castro came to power, Varda brought back from Cuba 1800 photos and used them to make this didactic and amusing documentary. She calls it socialism and cha-cha-cha.