Watch List: The World of Marcel the Shell


Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema Sat, Aug 20 1:00 PM
Film Info
Country Listing:France
West Germany
Cast/Crew Info
Director(s):Agnès Varda


Following the birth of her son, French filmmaker Agnès Varda spent most of her days at home—but she kept her fascination for the people and places that surrounded her. Varda found inspiration for Daguerréotypes just outside her door, on Paris’s rue Daguerre, where she had lived and worked since the 1950s. The director turns her camera on the business owners whose shops are the street’s lifeblood: bakers, tailors, butchers, perfumers, music-store clerks, driving instructors and others. Everyone is asked the same three questions: "Where did you come from?" "When did you get here?" "Why did you come?" Between the everyday rituals of their work, her subjects' pasts, relationships and dreams come alive.

"Beginning with Daguerréotypes, Agnès Varda awakened in me a powerful curiosity about people. Her films (especially her documentaries) are imbued with such wonder and an almost anthropological fascination for the life and living going on around her, which she observed with both deep compassion and signature off-beat humour. I sense that this impishness is probably something she developed in navigating her own life’s disappointments, and I’ve tried to adopt a similar approach. Life demands that we keep our eyes on the road, but in doing so, it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that we are also accidental tourists on a strange and beautiful safari. Because of her, I am sometimes playful when I could more easily be sad. Her work also taught me to examine small lived experiences more closely, because the greatest beauties can sometimes be hidden in the invisible nooks of daily routine. I think the popularity of Marcel is no doubt partly due to this: He teaches us to look closely, and to search near instead of far."

- Dean Fleischer-Camp, director of Marcel the Shell with Shoes On

Tickets: $15 (Members from $10)

Want more? Check out The World of Marcel the Shell, a special film series that tours the offbeat inspiration and influences behind the iconic stop-motion character Marcel the Shell. Curated in partnership with director Dean Fleischer-Camp.

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