StudioCanal have confirmed a new date for their Essential Jacques Tati Collection on Blu-ray, which was originally slated for the start of the year. A truly comprehensive package to celebrate Tati's extraordinary and influential career, the collection brings together all six of his celebrated feature films – Trafic, Parade, Playtime, Mon Oncle, Les Vacances de M Hulot and Jour de fête, as well as seven additional short films brought together on Les Courts Metragers.
The Essential Jacques Tati Collection will now be released on UK Blu-ray by StudioCanal as a 7-disc box set on 21st July 2014 at the RRP of £69.99.
Monsieur Hulot, the designer of an experimental camper van, takes it on the motorways of France and Belgium en route to the Amsterdam motor show where his prototype is to be exhibited. But, with numerous breakdowns and mechanical problems, not to mention a customs search and an accident, the road to Amsterdam is long and perilous. Will Hulot and his camper van ever make it to the show?
- An interview with film critic Jonathan Romney
At the Stockholm Cirkus, Tati revives his pantomimes in a wild, interactive circus show. Playing the compére, Monsieur Loyal, he links numbers by musicians, jugglers, magicians and acrobats. Although it was a commission from Swedish television mostly shot on video, Parade was conceived as a film to be shown theatrically. Tati uses it to transmit his experience to a younger generation of artists. As the spectacle unfolds, barriers break down between past and future, between artists, between technicians and spectators.
Tati’s last film resonates as a joyful tribute to live spectacle, while evoking his own beginnings in the music hall.
- In the Ring, an analytical film by Stéphane Goudet
Considered by many to be his masterpiece, Playtime was the most ambitious yet risky and expensive work of Tati’s career. Monsieur Hulot is set on meeting an American official in the hope of securing a job in a high tech version of Paris. Whilst on his way he encounters a group of female American tourists, resulting in all manner of chaos.
Like Home, an analytical film by Stéphane Goudet
Excerpts with commentary by Jérôme Deschamps and Stéphane Goudet
Mon Oncle (1958)
Mr and Mrs Arpel live in a remarkably modern house in a bland, clean neighbourhood. In this excessively controlled universe there is no room for play, chance or humour, and their son Gérard is bored. However the calm is broken with the sudden eruption of his eccentric misfit uncle, Monsieur Hulot, Madame Arpel’s brother. His family and entourage resent his whimsicality, especially as he becomes a role model for Gérard…
Everything Communicates, analytical film by Stéphane Goudet
Everything Is Beautiful, analytical film by Stéphane Goudet
Les Vacances de M. Hulot (1953)
At a seaside resort on the Atlantic coast, the city dwellers on vacation continue with their city ways. The childlike and accident-prone Monsieur Hulot (Jacques Tati) arrives in his backfiring old car, unintentionally destroying the tranquillity of his fellow patrons at the Hôtel de la Plage by simply trying to make the most of his holidays.
- Good Weather, Light Wind, an analytical film by Stéphane Goudet
Jour de fête (1949)
A festive day in Sainte-Sévère: the fairground entertainers have arrived, accompanied by their caravans, a merry-go-round and even a travelling cinema, showing the awe-struck villagers a documentary on the modern methods of the American postal service. With his old bicycle and single-minded resolve, François, the local postman (Jacques Tati) does his best to emulate his American colleagues.
Les courts métrages
If you happened to hear someone whistling along to advertisements in a cinema in the 1970s, then perhaps you came across Jacques Tati, ardent champion of the short film, which disappeared from cinemas in favour of advertisements. This series of short films reveals the individual style of Jacques Tati, mixing the ludicrous with the modern, as this skilled filmmaker invites us on a visual adventure that will change the way we see the world.
On demande une brute (1934)
Directed by Charles Barrois, written by Jacques Tati
Gai Dimanche (1935)
Directed by Jacques Berr and Jacques Tati
Siogne Tom Gauche (1936)
Directed by René Clément, written by Jacques Tati
L'ecole des facteurs (1946)
Directed by Jacques Tati
Cours du soir (1967)
Directed by Nicolas Ribowski, written by Jacques Tati
Dégustation maison (1976)
Directed by Sophie Tatischeff
Forza Bastia (1978)
Directed by Jacques Tati and Sophie Tatischeff
- Professor Goudet Lessons, an analysis of Jacques Tati’s films by Stéphane Goudet and Simon Wallon-Brownstone