110-112, 439, 729-731 The Complete Jacques Tati

Discuss DVDs and Blu-rays released by Criterion and the films on them. If it's got a spine number, it's in here. Threads may contain spoilers.
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domino harvey
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Re: 110-112, 439, 729-731 The Complete Jacques Tati

#176 Post by domino harvey » Sun Jan 11, 2015 7:30 pm

Zot! wrote:
domino harvey wrote:
Zot! wrote:[...]the bonus features all verge on unwatchable at a feature length. .
Could you please explain what you mean by this?
Sorry, bonus feature length films are hard to watch when they look lousy, especially when you know they exist in a better form.
Thanks, I thought you meant the bonuses featured in the set ie extras were unwatchable ie bad

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Re: 110-112, 439, 729-731 The Complete Jacques Tati

#177 Post by Zot! » Sun Jan 11, 2015 8:24 pm

domino harvey wrote:
Zot! wrote: Thanks, I thought you meant the bonuses featured in the set ie extras were unwatchable ie bad
No, I don't care or expect some ancient talking heads interview to even be HD (would prefer SD to save space, but that's another topic). But the color jour de fete or the original m. Hulot's holiday are not ephemera, they are important. In the case of Hulot's, these are films they've been kicking around since the 80's. If this is the best they could do for whatever reason, So be it, but as far as their legacy is concerned, this is not a package I would point to as a shining moment. Perhaps the best thing that SC have cobbled together though?


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gleemonex
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Re: 110-112, 439, 729-731 The Complete Jacques Tati

#179 Post by gleemonex » Wed May 06, 2015 6:54 pm

Nautilus Art Prints in Belgium is doing a series of screen prints on the films of Jacques Tati. Mr. Hulot's Holiday and Mon Oncle are currently available.

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PfR73
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Re: 110-112, 439, 729-731 The Complete Jacques Tati

#180 Post by PfR73 » Mon Feb 08, 2016 3:00 pm

I watched Jour De Fete for the first time this weekend. I actually went ahead & watched all 5 versions contained across the Criterion & BFI Blu-Rays. There are 2 scenes that still don't make sense to me even after watching it so many times:

1) When Francois gives a letter to a guy getting dressed & says something like "All gussied up for the big day?" and as he leaves, the camera pans to show (what I think is) a dead body on the bed. Is it a dead body? Why is it there? Who is the man getting dressed?
2) When Francois rides his bike past some American MPs, he pretends to talk on the broken telephone he is transporting. Why do the MPs frantically chase him and then swerve off the road for (what seems to me) no apparent reason? [Did Tati predict the recent laws banning cellphone use while driving an automobile or bicycle? ;) ]

Any background that could help me understand these gags better would be appreciated!
Last edited by PfR73 on Mon Feb 08, 2016 5:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Roger Ryan
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Re: 110-112, 439, 729-731 The Complete Jacques Tati

#181 Post by Roger Ryan » Mon Feb 08, 2016 5:17 pm

PfR73 wrote:I watched Jour De Fete for the first time this weekend. I actually went head & watched all 5 versions contained across the Criterion & BFI Blu-Rays. There are 2 scenes that still don't make sense to me even after watching it so many times:

1) When Francois gives a letter to a guy getting dressed & says something like "All gussied up for the big day?" and as he leaves, the camera pans to show (what I think is) a dead body on the bed. Is it a dead body? Why is it there? Who is the man getting dressed?
2) When Francois rides his bike past some American MPs, he pretends to talk on the broken telephone he is transporting. Why do the MPs frantically chase him and then swerve off the road for (what seems to me) no apparent reason? [Did Tati predict the recent laws banning cellphone use while driving an automobile or bicycle? ;) ]

Any background that could help me understand these gags better would be appreciated!
1) The man is dressing for a funeral of a departed relative (it was/is not uncommon for a body to be left "in state" in a home prior to the ceremony). The gag is that Francois does not notice the deceased when he jovially exclaims that the man must be dressing up for the festival. This is one of my favorite gags in the film.

2) A not-wholly-successful gag, but the MPs are shocked to see Francois talking on a telephone while riding his bike (possibly assuming it is some kind of spy technology?) and, in their haste to investigate, drive off the road. Since the Americans were an occupying force in the years following WWII, I'm sure any opportunity to show them as buffoons would be welcomed (part of the film's charm, of course, is how the American postal system is shown to be comically overreaching).

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Red Screamer
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Re: 110-112, 439, 729-731 The Complete Jacques Tati

#182 Post by Red Screamer » Thu Feb 11, 2016 7:26 pm

Trafic an incredibly frustrating film, no doubt reflecting Tati's feelings towards making it. The filmmaking is as impressive as you'd expect, but Tati is too restless to sustain the rhythmic or structural rigor that held together his previous three Hulot efforts. Instead, he jumps around from PlayTime-esque layered blocking to extreme long shots cut quickly to documentary montages to relentless series of gags similar to his earlier work. Only most of these gags aren't meant to be funny. In Trafic, Tati pushes even some of his most convention material into abstraction, either by providing a joke's setup but not the payoff (Hulot gets stuck in a tree unnoticed and then...cut to next scene) or by using a joke format for comedically unsatisfying material. Given the history of the film's production it's clear this isn't the film Tati wanted to make, and his refusal to give the audience the big laughs and meticulous gags that made M Hulot's Holiday and Mon Oncle so popular seems to be a way of showing it.

This frustration also appears on screen in the absence of one of the best components of Tati's style: the clarity of characterization. Though the people in his films are all caricatures, they have a distinct personality told almost entirely though body language. But in Trafic, the characters are non entities, including Hulot. Only Maria Kimberly is given something to do and even then her most prominent trait is "annoying". Her sudden change of character at the end rings false, unlike the similar transformation in the father of Mon Oncle. The disdain for Kimberly's character is most obvious in a cruel though admittedly well done sequence involving her mistaking a coat for her dead dog. Here and elsewhere in the film Tati's caustic slant can be off-putting, especially compared to the joyous construction of his earlier films.

That being said, Tati nails many absurd details of car culture, the stylistic frenzy can be hypnotic, and the peaks here (the crash, the car's gadgets, the windshield wipers) are truly inspired. Onto Parade!

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mizo
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Re: 110-112, 439, 729-731 The Complete Jacques Tati

#183 Post by mizo » Thu Feb 11, 2016 10:49 pm

Superswede, I actually found the film's stylistic eclecticism rather refreshing (especially given the lack of particularly memorable or fun characters). And I don't think the "abstraction," as you describe it, is really that far from what Tati was doing in his other films. For instance, M. Hulot's Holiday is the most dramatic illustration I can think of of the idea of comedy as rupture - some of those gags explode into being without any set-up, like when the boat that's being repaired is accidentally sent into the ocean, only to sink while the builders watch helplessly. Here, the humor exists entirely within the slow-burn of the pieces coming together after the fact (and that cut to Hulot trying to look inconspicuous, what actually happened still a mystery to us, is one of the funniest moments in the film). It's a kind of inversion of the similar scene in Chaplin's Modern Times, where the situation is first set up for us so that the ship being unmoored is the punchline. I'm not sure I would call it abstraction, but it's a brilliant subversion of the more traditional gag structure.

Also, it strikes me as a pretty big stretch to attribute the rather poor gem-to-dud gag ratio of Trafic to Tati's state of mind at the time of making it. All of his films have a few jokes that don't come off - Trafic has the most. I don't think it's any sign of the director feeling spurned by his audience or his financiers and looking to covertly express it.

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Re: 112 Playtime

#184 Post by guidedbyvoices » Tue Feb 23, 2016 4:16 pm

Got the criterion Blu Ray from Netflix this weekend. My first time watching anything by Tati, so I wasnt sure what to expect. It's a lot to take in at once, even though it's not fast paced at all. Funniest bit for me was the travel posters. Also some scenes seemed to have cutouts of people in the background like in the office cubes, but even though it may have been by necessity, I think it works with the themes in the movie anyway. I find myself thinking about the different scenes and shots a lot more after watching it that I'm ready to see it again, but I think I'll check out mon oncle first.

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swo17
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Re: 112 Playtime

#185 Post by swo17 » Tue Feb 23, 2016 4:42 pm

I doubt Netflix is stocking the re-release of the Blu-ray, which looks about 100 times better.

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mfunk9786
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Re: 112 Playtime

#186 Post by mfunk9786 » Tue Feb 23, 2016 4:44 pm

GBV, you should definitely consider taking advantage of the current Criterion.com sale and buying the whole Tati set, as swo alludes to. It's worth it.

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guidedbyvoices
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Re: 112 Playtime

#187 Post by guidedbyvoices » Tue Feb 23, 2016 4:51 pm

swo17 wrote:I doubt Netflix is stocking the re-release of the Blu-ray, which looks about 100 times better.
Good to know - Netflix has the box set on DVD - all titles and the short films, then mom oncle and playtime on Blu Ray as well, so I guess that'd be the pre box set Blu Rays
mfunk9786 wrote:GBV, you should definitely consider taking advantage of the current Criterion.com sale and buying the whole Tati set, as swo alludes to. It's worth it.
It's a lot to buy on a (mostly) blind buy. I'd like to see one more and then maybe get it on the next big sale. I binged on a bunch of other titles in that sale today

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Re: 112 Playtime

#188 Post by swo17 » Tue Feb 23, 2016 6:38 pm

That's strange that they'd have only Mon oncle on Blu-ray from the new boxset. Was the Playtime disc they sent you green or white? (Green would be the re-release.)

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Re: 112 Playtime

#189 Post by guidedbyvoices » Tue Feb 23, 2016 10:25 pm

swo17 wrote:That's strange that they'd have only Mon oncle on Blu-ray from the new boxset. Was the Playtime disc they sent you green or white? (Green would be the re-release.)
Based on screenshots of the criterion box set, the criterion version Netflix had was the stand alone version. It'll be interesting to see if it is the box set version of mon oncle or some European release?

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domino harvey
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Re: 112 Playtime

#190 Post by domino harvey » Tue Feb 23, 2016 10:27 pm

Why isn't this thread part of the Tati Collection thread? Bizarre

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swo17
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Re: 112 Playtime

#191 Post by swo17 » Tue Feb 23, 2016 10:40 pm

There were four old threads for individual releases that would have been a headache to merge, so instead I just had the first post of the thread for the boxset link to each of them. I guess those threads should be locked now so that all subsequent discussion goes in the new thread.

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PfR73
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Re: 110-112, 439, 729-731 The Complete Jacques Tati

#192 Post by PfR73 » Sun Feb 28, 2016 9:16 am

Roger Ryan wrote:1) The man is dressing for a funeral of a departed relative (it was/is not uncommon for a body to be left "in state" in a home prior to the ceremony). The gag is that Francois does not notice the deceased when he jovially exclaims that the man must be dressing up for the festival. This is one of my favorite gags in the film.

2) A not-wholly-successful gag, but the MPs are shocked to see Francois talking on a telephone while riding his bike (possibly assuming it is some kind of spy technology?) and, in their haste to investigate, drive off the road. Since the Americans were an occupying force in the years following WWII, I'm sure any opportunity to show them as buffoons would be welcomed (part of the film's charm, of course, is how the American postal system is shown to be comically overreaching).
Thanks for the explanations!


calculus entrophy
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Re: 110-112, 439, 729-731 The Complete Jacques Tati

#194 Post by calculus entrophy » Tue Dec 06, 2016 5:12 pm

Order Confirmed.

Thanks for the heads up!

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aox
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Re: 110-112, 439, 729-731 The Complete Jacques Tati

#195 Post by aox » Wed Dec 07, 2016 12:17 pm

Wow, that's incredible

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whaleallright
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Re: 110-112, 439, 729-731 The Complete Jacques Tati

#196 Post by whaleallright » Thu Dec 08, 2016 2:52 am

While that poster's a nice job in the familiar neo-midcentury-modern style that's so popular these days (on tumblr, anyway), nothing should supplant the iconic, more aggressively modernist original by Rene Ferracci, one of the great movie-poster designs.

And by rights, the Eiffel Tower should be visible only in reflection.

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Re: 110-112, 439, 729-731 The Complete Jacques Tati

#197 Post by calculus entrophy » Thu Dec 08, 2016 8:01 am

Agreed. If it makes any difference, I felt a sense of betrayal and shame coming on as I clicked "add to cart".

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domino harvey
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Re: 110-112, 439, 729-731 The Complete Jacques Tati

#198 Post by domino harvey » Thu Dec 08, 2016 12:09 pm

Luckily you allowed to like more than one poster for a film

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Re: 110-112, 439, 729-731 The Complete Jacques Tati

#199 Post by pistolwink » Thu Dec 08, 2016 5:20 pm

Not only that, but you're allowed to register an opinion on an infinite number of things. For now, at least.


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