This film was shot during the summer of 1968 in Oakland, California around the meetings organized by the Black Panthers Party to free Huey Netwon, one of their leaders, and to turn his trial into a political debate. They tried and succeeded in catching America’s attention.
Agnès Varda has been called the “Grandmother of the New Wave,” a well-meaning if curious tribute for a woman who directed her first feature film at the age of 26. Born in Brussels, Varda studied literature and psychology at the Sorbonne, and art history at the École du Louvre. She’d originally wanted to be a museum curator, but a night-school course in photography changed her mind. Rapidly establishing herself as a top-rank still photographer, Varda became the official cameraperson for the Theatre Festival of Avignon and the Theatre National Populaire, and then pursued a career as a photojournalist.
Encouraged by filmmaker Alain Resnais, Varda made her movie directorial bow in 1955 with La Pointe Courte. She based the film on a William Faulkner short story, to which she was attracted because of its parallel plotlines (a recurring device in her later films). That same year, she accompanied another future New Wave director, Chris Marker, to China as visual advisor for his Dimanche… read more
Fascinating time capsule from Varda. Interesting to see the community together and in one voice. Panthers long misunderstood and so interesting to hear the points and the female perspective. However, some of the narration comes across as politically biased (probably rightly so) and flaws the work as a true documentary.
Important piece of history captured. This should be shown in schools because there is much misrepresentation today of what the Black Panther Party was and what it stood for. The man reciting the Ten Points, Huey P. Newton's words and the music capture the spirit of those times.