Los Angeles is a place that possesses fairly romantic connotations for me despite the fact that on many levels it is a sleazy, woebegone hellhole. Mur Murs speaks to what appeals to me about Los Angeles, and does so w/ a committed attitude of engagement, wonder, and curiosity. The murals, as well as those who make them and those who live amidst them, suggest a place of colliding elsewheres. This is interculture.
Coolest movie I've seen about art! "'I wanted to show how a city can express itself. It's really telling a lot about politics, the situation, the segregation. Obviously there are no murals in Bel-Air.' [On film being] a product of time and place ... Varda reflect[ed]: 'Then it becomes, maybe nothing, maybe a witness.'" - Varda quoted by Maria Lopez, KCET at the 2013 restored print premiere, Santa Monica.
Understated, playful, and captivating. Varda guides us through show-and-tell in Mur Murs: narration and imagery coalesce and present a behemoth city in an intimate and accessible way. The singular subject--murals-- captures a diverse cast of activists, roller disco dancers, painters with bad 80s hair, religious fanatics, cholos and existentialists. Art mimicking life mimicking art mimicking life.
An absolutely beautiful love letter to Los Angeles and its people. Agnès Varda has unbelievable skill matching images to create symbolic, poetic meaning. There are a number of striking images that come to mind: The children beating the piñata while the adults spoke about police violence, the pig mural centered as the "Farmer" logo truck rolls in to the frame. Mur Murs has everything you want from a documentary.