Faces Places to open Perth Festival

French documentary Faces Places will open the Perth Festival as the first featured Lotterywest film.

I was lucky enough to see the preview before it opens at Somerville and though I’m not usually a fan of documentaries, this one was interesting and held my attention.

Agnès Varda and JR

We meet Agnès Varda, a sprightly 89-year-old hero of cinema and her young friend photographer JR as they take JR’s mobile photography lab around rural France.

The special relationship between Agnès and JR is a lovely dynamic and essentially is why the film works so well.

They are both passionate about their art and genuinely interested in people and bringing the community together.


Throughout the documentary we travel to tiny villages throughout France meeting locals where Agnès and JR listen to their stories and take pictures along the way.

JR and his team would then paste up the giant portraits and posters around creating a visual story against the old buildings which were chosen specifically to tell these amazing stories.

Having lived in France I loved seeing the different perspective from working class French and everyday life that most tourists don’t experience. It was surprisingly powerful the way Agnès and JR portrayed each person’s story which helped the audience feel the connection.

Portrait of the postman

Faces Places even had near perfect translations on the subtitles which is very uncommon for a foreign film and it allowed audiences to enjoy the film without anything getting lost in translation.

Directed by both Agnès and JR they created this documentary which is perfect for foreign audiences. It allows the viewer to concentrate on the amazing imagery and still read the subtitles as people share their stories.

I would definitely recommend this documentary for people to start the Perth Festival.

Winner of the Best Documentary at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival, this uplifting travelogue celebrates the ordinary people, France, art and an unlikely friendship.

Faces Places will be screening at UWA’s Somerville cinema from 27 November to 3 December. Or at ECU Joondalup Pines 5-10 December.

Click here for more information and to book tickets https://www.perthfestival.com.au/event/faces-places.