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The lore and past life of Young Girls of Rochefort

8/10
Author: Thorkell A Ottarsson from Norway
22 November 2013

It was 25 years since Jacques Demy made Young Girls of Rochefort in (yes you guessed it correctly) Rochefort, a small harbor town which has little to boast off other than this famous and wonderful French musical was made there.

So Varda is invited to the celebration of the big day (well 3 months) in the life of the inhabitants who have seen the film countless time and regard it as one of the high points in their history. Streets are named in honor of this film, the town is painted in the colors of the film and people dress up like the characters of the film.

Varda interviews people who took part in making the film, people who stood at the sidelines and watched (and felt like this was a huge and wonderful party) and the shop keepers who had never made as much money.

We often forget how much a film can mean to the local people where it is filmed, especially if it is filmed in a small unknown place. The film is magical but its life does not stop there. It casts its spell over a town which thrives on those memories of Catherine Deneuve and Gene Kelly danced on their streets and become a part of its lore, an extension of its life. It is this past life Varda captures so well in this documentary.

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