One Sings, the Other Doesn't

One Sings, the Other Doesn't

France | 1977 | 121 minutes | Agnès Varda

January 11, 2020

The Restless Curiosity of Agnès Varda

Initially divisive for its sunny, idealized view of female liberation, One Sings, the Other Doesn't now seems all the more radical—and all the more vital—for its unabashedly utopian spirit.

When seventeen-year-old Pauline (Valérie Mairesse) helps struggling mother of two Suzanne (Thérèse Liotard) procure the money for an abortion, a deep bond forms between the two, one that endures over the course of more than a decade as each searches for her place in the world-encountering the dawning of the women's movement, dreamy boho musical numbers, and an Iranian adventure along the way.

Description courtesy of Janus Films

"To describe Varda's picture as an ardent tribute to the never-not-timely subjects of women's liberation and solidarity is to risk making it sound awfully schematic. But if One Sings, the Other Doesn't is something of a thesis movie, that thesis takes shape gently, with equal parts documentary grit and dreamlike evanescence."—Justin Chang, The Los Angeles Times

  • Director: Agnès Varda
  • Principal Cast: Thérèse Liotard, Valérie Mairesse, Robert Dadiès
  • Country: France, Belgium, Soviet Union, Venezuela
  • Year: 1977
  • Running Time: 121 minutes
  • Screenplay: Agnès Varda
  • Language: French
  • Has Subtitles: Yes