We’ve all experienced that period of waiting, a set time at which you are supposed to receive some news — test scores, a potential job offer, medical test results — and the time until then to wait.
That is the “5 to 7” in the title of Agnes Varda’s “Cléo from 5 to 7,” the final selection in this year’s Rosa Goddard International Film Festival. It shows at 7 Wednesday night at the Kentucky Theatre.
Last week we had Czech new wave, and this week its French new wave, a period most commonly associated with directors such as Jean-Luc Godard and François Truffaut. But Roger Ebert said Varda was the movement’s “very soul.”
“The passage of time has been kinder to her films than some of theirs, and ‘Cléo from 5 to 7’ plays today as startlingly modern,” Ebert wrote. “Released in 1962, it seems as innovative and influential as any New Wave film.”
The story focuses on a young Parisian pop singer (Corinne Marchand) who is awaiting test results that will tell her if she has cancer. During her wait, she seeks visions of the future from a tarot card reader, sings with her accompanist, meets with her lover and surfs emotional waves from elation to despair until she finally meets a soldier who gives her the comfort she needs as her time draws near.
If all waits such as this could be as beautiful, Varda’s background as a still photographer shows in perfectly framed images that must be even more striking on the big screen.