Jane By CharlotteDirected by Charlotte Gainsbourg

“Jane by Charlotte,” the directorial debut of the actress and singer Charlotte Gainsbourg, is a meandering and elusive documentary portrait of Gainsbourg’s mother, Jane Birkin. An “It” girl of the 1960s and ’70s, Birkin is known for starring in risqué art-house films (like “Blow-Up”), and for her romance with Serge Gainsbourg, with whom she collaborated on a hit album before starting her solo singing career.

Gainsbourg pays homage to Agnès Varda’s 1988 docudrama, “Jane B. par Agnès V.,” which captures Birkin, age 40, considering her status as a muse and icon. “Jane by Charlotte” sees Birkin at 74 and picks up on fixations of hers apparent in that earlier film — her love of bulldogs, photographs and motherhood — as well as her ideas about femininity.