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A Tati's retrospective at the NFT in August

By France in London

The NFT will screen a retrospective of Jacques Tati films, including shorts and TV appearances, from 1st August 2003.

Trailing delicious disorder behind him Hulot returns to British screens this summer as the bfi presents Monsieur Hulot's Holiday. The lead title in a quartet of comic gems from Jacques Tati, Monsieur Hulot will be on general release in London and the UK with new prints of Jour de Fête, Mon Oncle and Playtime are also being made available. All four will screen during the Jacques Tati retrospective at the National Film Theatre in August.

The programme:
Monsieur Hulot's Holiday
Jour de Fête
Mon oncle

(Les Vacances de M. Hulot) (FR 1953 )
Directed by Jacques Tati / 86 mins / b&w / cert tbc / English subtitles
Starring Jacques Tati, Nathalie Pascaud, Michèle Rolla

Release date: 8th August 2003

"He is a 'lunaire', Hulot. Someone with his head on the moon."
Jacques Tati, interview with Denis Hart, Daily Telegraph, 2nd August 1968

Tati's warm-hearted caricature of the middle-class vacationing is a scrapbook of seaside snapshots and anecdotes. With the informal charm of a home movie, this is observational comedy at its laid back finest. The deceptively casual cascade of gags revives the visual beauty of the silent era. Dialogue is minimal but Tati's sound jokes are superb. From the babbling station tannoy to the squeaking door of the hotel dining room, Tati gives inanimate objects a life of their own.

Monsieur Hulot, all lolloping limbs, pipe and hat, became one of cinema's best-loved characters. Throwing himself into everything from a tennis match to a fancy dress party, Hulot is an accident personified. Amiable and courteous, he is a gentle lunatic, unaware that his enthusiasms are forging a chain of disaster. A major influence on comedians from Terry Jones to Dom Joly, and particularly Rowan Atkinson's Mr Bean, Tati's legacy remains still strong today.

Seeing the finished film's idiosyncratic structure, Tati's financial backers had serious doubts about its commercial appeal. A rapturous public preview proved them wrong, and in the summer of 1953, a French general strike kept Parisians in the city during August while the film played to capacity crowds.

A cinematic sea breeze, Monsieur Hulot's Holiday will revive on even the stickiest summer day.

   No  cinema in London is currently playing this film.
    Tati's film Monsieur Hulot's holiday
  Top of the page Jour de Fête
(FR 1949)
Dir: Jacques Tati / 80 mins / colour / cert tbc
Cast : Jacques Tati, Guy Decomble, Paul Frankeur, Santa Relli Tati's first feature was an immediate success and it won the best screenplay award at the Venice Film Festival in 1949. It was declared by Jean-Luc Godard to be the birth of French neo-realism.

   No  cinema in London is currently playing this film.
Tati' film Jour de fête
  Top of the page Mon Oncle
(FR 1958)
Dir : Jacques Tati / 114 mins / colour / cert tbc
Cast : Jacques Tati, Jean-Pierre Zola, Adrienne Servantie

   No  cinema in London is currently playing this film.
Tati's film mon Oncle
  Top of the page Playtime
(FR 1967)
Dir : Jacques Tati / 126 mins / colour / cert tbc
Cast : Jacques Tati, Barbara Dennek, Jacqueline Lecomte

   No  cinema in London is currently playing this film.
Tati's film Playtime
  Top of the page Links
Visit the bfi website for further information

Other links :
Les Vacances de Monsieur Hulot by


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