Agnés Varda's Women

2200 WordsJun 23, 20189 Pages
Agnès Varda made several films during the New Wave that were pertinent to women. She herself is in an atypical profession in the male dominated industry of film. She continues to challenge male-dominated filmmaking and creates films and characters that also challenge the traditional role of women. Any preconceived notions of what a woman should be are nowhere to be seen in Varda’s films. Feminism is manifested in many of Varda’s films. She shows the journey of different women in a male dominated society. Cléo in Cléo from 5 to 7 goes through her journey trapped by the male gaze, imprisoned. However, Mona in Vagabond chooses to be free from it, the camera and its gaze does not bind her. These films seem to be strongly interested in the…show more content…
Varda artfully uses the long-take to convey Cléo’s fear. Varda allows this sadness to occur naturally out of what the viewer thought would be a cheerful rehearsal session. This pivotal moment is when Cléo is going to change her position and become the one who gazes. To achieve this she has to give up all the superficiality and physical nuances of her every day life as Cléo, the singer. She proceeds to go behind a curtain, takes off her wig, and puts on a plain back dress. She strips herself of Cléo and becomes Florence. Her “show world”, her life as Cléo alienates her, makes her a spectacle for people to gaze at. But by stripping herself of this image, she starts to master her ability to have her own gaze. Cléo sheds her false image in order to actively observe her surroundings. This leads to her spontaneous friendship with Antoine later on. With her new image, Cléo eventually begins to challenge her gaze with the gaze of all of the others. When walking down the street, Cléo is not alienated anymore; she is just another person in the crowd on the busy streets of Paris. In the café scene, it is not mirrors that are hanging on the walls anymore but paintings. In this scene, Cléo looks completely lost because she doesn’t have to comfort of looking at her own face in a mirror. She turns on one of her songs on the jukebox and waits to be recognized, waits to attract the gaze of the people in

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