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The Films of Jacques Tati
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The Films of Jacques Tati

3.65 of 5 stars 3.65  ·  rating details  ·  23 ratings  ·  8 reviews
"A first translation was originally published with Guernica in 1997"--Page 4 of cover.
Paperback, 300 pages
Published May 29th 2003 by Guernica Editions (first published January 1st 1997)
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This is a very charming elegant small book by Michel Chion about the huge talent - Jacques Tati. Chion is a filmmaker (never seen his work) who also wrote various books on Kubrick and David Lynch. Tati belongs in that grouping of visionary filmmakers. Criterion has put out most of his films on DVD, and all of fantastic. But really recommend the 70mm print of "Playtime" in a movie theater of course. Tati's work is incredibly visual, and in many ways he reminds me of Buster Keaton. Forgetting the ...more
For the hardcore only - interesting thoughts, though as an essay by a French writer for Cahiers du Cinema, it reads like - well, an essay by a French writer for Cahiers du Cinema. I kind of want to tell the guy to get the beret out of his eyes occasionally. I love me the Tati films (or I'd never have gotten the book), but nothing makes comedy, even complex comedy, less funny than pretentious people holding it up to the light and proclaiming that it's not even comedy, for eet eez too byooteeful. ...more
"Jacques Tati(scheff) had a number of good labels attached to his name; it was not difficult for him to be an artist. Little effort was needed for him to sign his name as an artist does. All he had to do was place the letter "r" between the "a" and "t" of his surname."

Chion likes to wander around a bit, but if you can handle that and its anecdotal-like structure, you get some interesting musings and tidbits from a great film critic. If you're looking for an overarching argument, you'll be disappointed.
If you've seen all 6 films, watched the Criterion extra features, read the excellent biography by Bellos, and you're still hungry for more Tati, then this little book is an enjoyable little adventure.
This features a lot of useful information/observations about Tati's films, but at the same time it goes on too many useless tangents and the prose itself is occasionally unbearable.
You'd think that a serious French critic who writes for the Cahiers would be able to do a little better than this imagistic twaddle.
Wendy Crittenden
for my thesis, and for pleasure, i thus far love the way this is written... complements tati's aesthetic. quick read.
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