The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
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All Critics (18)
| Top Critics (3)
| Fresh (18)
| Rotten (0)
| DVD (2)
The road movie takes a somber turn in this austerely beautiful 1985 French drama by Agnes Varda.
A masterpiece, clearly one of the finest films in many a year.
What a film this is. Like so many of the greatest films, it tells us a very specific story, strong and unadorned, about a very particular person.
A remarkable and chilling example of social-realism enshrined in a cautionary fable of a broken society.
This smooth, gliding action gives the camera the feel of a floating apparition observing a moment while in transit, attempting to draw in as much detail as possible but never stopping to stare.
An unmissable film from this great director.
Agnes Varda's sturdy neo-realistic social study of a fiercely individualistic young woman, who happily lives a hobo's life on the road in France, is nothing short of a masterpiece.
Vagabond doesn't ask its main character to explain herself, and that attitude makes all the difference.
A striking film -- one that feels like it was made at least 10 years earlier -- and, I must note, a fairly depressing one.
Gets a stellar performance from Bonnaire.
Agnes Varda's anatomy of a female vagabond, beautifully played by Sandrine Bonnaire, is captivating, haunting and uncompromising.
shows how there's an inherent brutality to living without rules... without ever devolving into melodrama or didacticism
Pursuing the roads for purpose, meaning, and acceptance. A subjective examination of a pernicious interpretation of freedom, Vagabond is an Agnès Varda character examination that simply observes and appreciates, mostly dependent on the outstanding performance of a young Sandrine Bonnaire as Mona Bergeron. Outstanding.
it's a beautiful film, perhaps a little too poetic in it's view of homelessness. definite tones of' 'into the wild' in other characters' envy of the heroine's freedom. i loved how varda framed shots but was a little annoyed at characters breaking the fourth wall. sandrine bonnaire is excellent, well worth a watch
A teenage girl is found frozen to death in a ditch on a winter morning in rural France. Through flashbacks and interviews, the rest of the film shows the audience how she got there. It's not a happy or pretty story, but it's a story worth experiencing.
The film follows this young woman, named Simone "Mona" Bergeron, as she travels on foot across Southern France. We watch as she encounters others such as herself, and others who are not like her at all. She drinks too much, uses drugs, has sex seemingly indiscriminately, seems to have no goals or plans other than life on the road. She reveals a few desires along the way, such as wanting to have a potato farm and wanting a relationship with someone, but when both opportunities present themselves, she does not make use of them. We are never told any more about her, where she is from, if she is running away or running to, and from or to what. The people who knew her along the way discuss her only in the barest of details, in that they don't know any more than we do about her. There are several scenes of people judging Mona based on her outward appearance. Yes, they are correct in some instances, but somehow they still come across as clods for thinking that way.
I've always found Southern France to be beautiful, with its quaint towns, wide fields of lavender, grapes and sunflowers, and fountains. However, in director Agnes Varda's hands, this open landscape turns into something desolate and unfriendly, cold to all but the most privileged of its citizens, but yet still beautiful. It is very much a metaphor for Mona's life.
With the exception of a few characters -- Madame Landier the agronomist, Yolande, Jean-Pierre and his delightful old aunt Lydie -- only Mona is given any real screen time. Sandrine Bonnaire won a Cesar (the French Academy Award) for her portrayal of this down-and-out young woman. She was only 18 at the time, and she does a wonderful job of making Mona both sympathetic and distasteful -- we are told she smells bad, she is lazy and rarely it seems that she appreciates the things people do to help her. But yet you still want her to succeed, even though we know from the very beginning that she won't. Bonnaire resembles a young brunette Jeanne Moreau, so much so that I researched to see if there was any familial connection (I didn't find anything.)
You might want to save this film for another time if you are feeling in any way down or lonely. But don't forget about it. You may be saddened, but you won't be disappointed.
An interesting French film, one that is in many ways meant as an answer to Citizen Kane. Like Kane, the film begins with the central character?s death and then tells that person?s life story through flashbacks remembered by various people she met. The difference is that instead of telling the story of a millionaire it tells the story of a homeless woman. Of course, this isn?t anywhere near as great as Citizen Kane, but it is an interesting take on that film?s format. The things that happen to the vagabond are not spectacularly interesting in and of themselves, but they form an interesting portrait. The ultimate irony, is that in many ways this vagabond is much happier when she dies than Charles Foster Kane could have ever dreamed to be.
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