Films That Made Us Happy in 2017: Faces Places


Most of the films I’ve covered on this site thus far have been very dark and gritty critically acclaimed dramas, or completely terrible and underwhelming misfires. Because of this, it may seem like I only enjoy depressing and cynical things. This is not true. In reality, I’m a giant softie.

One minute I’ll be watching a really disturbing and sad episode of Black Mirror, and the next I won’t shut up about how fantastic Paddington 2 is. However, as much as I love Paddington 2, the film that has made me the happiest this year is Faces Places. This is a new documentary from the famous French street artist JR, and the very famous French filmmaker Agnes Varda, who was the only woman making films in the French new wave. She and JR seem like very different people at first, but they end up being the perfect people to helm this film.

Faces_places_heroFaces Places is a documentary about JR and Agnes Varda traveling to different parts of France and creating weird and unique pieces of street art based around people they meet in these communities. This film may seem like a very fluffy romp with an old lady and a hipster, but it’s much more than that. We really get to see the root of Agnes and JR’s friendship, and what draws them to one another. The film also does a really amazing job at tributing the people that live in these small french towns, and shows them as real people more than subjects of some art project.

2We see the emotional ups and downs of their trip, the successes and failures of their artistic endeavors, and their friendship blossom as they make this film together. It made me laugh, it made me smile, and it even made me cry a few times. This film is not just something that makes me happy, but something that will inspire me for years to come. I’ve been planning on taking a train trip across the country for a while now, and this film has made me very serious about doing it, and even making a documentary of this trip. This is the kind of film that makes you want to get a camera, run out onto the street, and just film everything around you because you’re so inspired, and I love that about it.

Brody-Faces-Places-SecondaryPlease see this if you haven’t. It’s one of the funniest and sweetest documentaries I’ve ever seen, and I’d recommend it to pretty much everyone. Much like Paddington 2, it is a film about experiencing life in the most positive way that you can, and it is a film about true friendship. In my opinion, it’s one of the best of it’s kind, and I cannot recommend it enough.

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