Female Gaze: Women Directors + Women Cinematographers

Female Gaze: Women Directors + Women Cinematographers

43 Episodes

This sprawling selection of films both directed and shot by women testifies to an extraordinary tradition of female collaboration behind the camera. Spanning the last half century of cinema and including work by trailblazing director-cinematographer duos such as Chantal Akerman and Babette Mangolte (JEANNE DIELMAN, 23 QUAI DU COMMERCE, 1080 BRUXELLES; NEWS FROM HOME), Claire Denis and Agnès Godard (BEAU TRAVAIL, LET THE SUNSHINE IN), and Jane Campion and Sally Bongers (A GIRL’S OWN STORY, SWEETIE), as well as fruitful recent partnerships like Céline Sciamma and Crystel Fournier (TOMBOY, GIRLHOOD) and Josephine Decker and Ashley Connor (BUTTER ON THE LATCH, THOU WAST MILD AND LOVELY), these extraordinary films reveal a vital legacy of visionary women seizing the tools of visual storytelling and opening up new possibilities for cinema.

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Female Gaze: Women Directors + Women Cinematographers
  • Female Gaze: In Their Own Words

    Episode 1

    In this program, female directors, cinematographers, and actors discuss their work.

  • Female Gaze Teaser

    Episode 2

  • Joyce at 34

    Episode 3

    Directed by Joyce Chopra and Claudia Weill • 1972 • United States
    Starring Joyce Chopra

    In feminist filmmaker Joyce Chopra’s JOYCE AT 34 (codirected with Claudia Weill, who would later direct the great unsung GIRLFRIENDS), Chopra examines the demands of juggling a baby and a professional career.

  • Film About a Woman Who . . .

    Episode 4

    Directed by Yvonne Rainer • 1974 • United States
    Starring Dempster Leech, Shirley Soffer, John Erdman

    Choreographer turned filmmaker Yvonne Rainer proposed a revolutionary new cinematic language rooted in dance, performance art, autobiography, and a radical intersectional feminism. This landmark...

  • Girls at 12

    Episode 5

    Made by Joyce Chopra in 1975 for the Education Development Center in Newton, Massachusetts, as part of the program The Role of Women in American Society, GIRLS AT 12 looks at the lives of three girls growing up near Boston in order to show the complexities of becoming a teenager in the midseventi...

  • Daguerréotypes

    Episode 6

    Directed by Agnès Varda • 1975 • France
    Starring Lucien Bossy, Léonce Debrossian, Marcelle Debrossian

    Spending most of her days at home following the birth of her son but curious as ever about the people and places that surrounded her, Agnès Varda found inspiration for DAGUERRÉOTYPES just outsid...

  • Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles

    Episode 7

    Directed by Chantal Akerman • 1975 • Belgium
    Starring Delphine Seyrig, Jan Decorte

    A singular work in film history, Chantal Akerman’s JEANNE DIELMAN, 23, QUAI DU COMMERCE, 1080 BRUXELLES meticulously details, with a sense of impending doom, the daily routine of a middle-aged widow, whose chores ...

  • News from Home

    Episode 8

    Directed by Chantal Akerman • 1976 • United States

    Letters from Chantal Akerman's mother are read over a series of elegantly composed shots of 1976 New York, where our (unseen) filmmaker and protagonist has relocated. Akerman's unforgettable time capsule of the city is also a gorgeous meditati...

  • Clorae and Albie

    Episode 9

    Made by Joyce Chopra in 1976 for the Education Development Center in Newton, Massachusetts, as part of the program The Role of Women in American Society, CLORAE AND ALBIE focuses on two young Black women who have been best friends since childhood but whose lives are taking different paths.

  • Mur Murs

    Episode 10

    Directed by Agnès Varda • 1981 • France

    After returning to Los Angeles from France in 1979, Agnès Varda created this kaleidoscopic documentary about the striking murals that decorate the city. Bursting with color and vitality, MUR MURS is as much an invigorating study of community and diversity ...

  • The Willmar 8

    Episode 11

    Directed by Lee Grant • 1981 • United States
    Starring Lee Grant

    Academy Award–winning actor and documentary filmmaker Lee Grant follows eight women in America’s heartland who are driven by gender discrimination to picket the bank where they work in the dead of a Minnesota winter. Risking jobs, f...

  • The Gold Diggers

    Episode 12

    Directed by Sally Potter • 1983 • United Kingdom
    Starring Julie Christie, Colette Laffont, Hilary Westlake

    Made with an all-woman crew, Sally Potter’s bold feature debut is a surrealist science-fiction musical that explores the link between female cinematic representation and capitalist exploita...

  • A Girl’s Own Story

    Episode 13

    Directed by Jane Campion • 1983 • Australia

    This early short from director Jane Campion concerns a group of teenage girls in the 1960s.

  • Jane B. par Agnès V.

    Episode 14

    Directed by Agnès Varda • 1988 • France
    Starring Jane Birkin, Agnès Varda, Charlotte Gainsbourg

    The interests, obsessions, and fantasies of two singular artists converge in this inspired collaboration between Agnès Varda and her longtime friend the actor Jane Birkin. Made over the course of a ye...

  • Sweetie

    Episode 15

    Directed by Jane Campion • 1989 • New Zealand
    Starring Genevieve Lemon, Karen Colston, Tom Lycos

    Though she went on to create a string of brilliant films, Jane Campion will always be remembered for her stunning debut feature SWEETIE, which focuses on the hazardous relationship between the button...

  • Odds and Ends

    Episode 16

    Directed by Michelle Parkerson • 1993 • United States

    In the year 2096, Black women warriors wage a battle against racial and gender annihilation. In this devastated universe, a fable unfolds on the interplanetary frontlines. Lieutenant Loz Wayard, a courageous young Amazon, learns the price of ...

  • Angela

    Episode 17

    Directed by Rebecca Miller • 1995 • United States
    Starring Miranda Rhyne, Charlotte Eve Blythe

    Rebecca Miller’s spellbinding debut feature is a searing portrait of a ten-year-old girl (Miranda Rhyne) who—as her mentally ill mother’s sanity deteriorates—retreats into a disturbing imaginative univ...

  • The Incredibly True Adventure of Two Girls in Love

    Episode 18

    Directed by Maria Maggenti • 1995 • United States
    Starring Laurel Holloman, Nicole Ari Parker, Maggie Moore

    Breaking new ground in queer representation when it was released in 1995, this tender and charming tale of first love traces the tentative relationship that develops between two high-schoo...

  • Nenette and Boni

    Episode 19

    Directed by Claire Denis • 1996 • France
    Starring Grégoire Colin, Alice Houri, Jacques Nolot

    One of Claire Denis’s most poignant films centers on the relationship between estranged teenage siblings Boni (Denis regular Grégoire Colin), a starry-eyed pizza maker, and his troubled younger sister, N...

  • Beau travail

    Episode 20

    Directed by Claire Denis • 1999 • France
    Starring Denis Lavant, Michel Subor, Grégoire Colin

    With her ravishingly sensual take on Herman Melville’s “Billy Budd, Sailor,” Claire Denis firmly established herself as one of the great visual tone poets of our time. Amid the azure waters and sunbaked ...

  • Conversations with Intellectuals About Selena

    Episode 21

    Directed by Lourdes Portillo • 1999 • United States

    Interrogating the Selena phenomenon, Lourdes Portillo brings together a group of Chicana cultural critics to talk about the Tejana music icon. Delving into their reactions to Selena’s groundbreaking rise, widespread influence, and tragic death,...

  • La captive

    Episode 22

    Directed by Chantal Akerman • 2000 • Belgium, France
    Starring Sylvie Testud, Stanislas Merhar, Olivia Bonamy

    Adapting the fifth volume of Marcel Proust’s “In Search of Lost Time,” Chantal Akerman transforms the material into a mesmerizing study of voyeurism, control, and sexual obsession centere...

  • The Headless Woman

    Episode 23

    Directed by Lucrecia Martel • 2008 • Argentina
    Starring María Onetto, Claudia Cantero, Inés Efron

    A bourgeois middle-aged dentist named Verónica (María Onetto) drives alone on a dirt road, becomes distracted, and runs over something. Immediately she becomes disoriented, unmoored from her identit...

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    Episode 24

    Home

    Episode 24

    Directed by Ursula Meier • 2008 • France
    Starring Isabelle Huppert, Olivier Gourmet, Adélaïde Leroux

    This mesmerizing fable of modern family life stars Isabelle Huppert as Marthe, a happy-go-lucky mother whose family enjoys an idyllic existence in their isolated, ramshackle home, which edges ont...