The Iconic Jacques Tati – France Today | EUROtoday

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Tati's rise to prominence within the Seventh Art took many a swerve en route. After stints at his father's esteemed Parisian picture-framing workshop, an compulsory interval of nationwide service adopted (as did, later, motion within the Second World War), then he served as a semi-pro rugby participant, which enabled his amusing japes to be appreciated by his teammates. A grounding as a music corridor star laid the platform for roles in movie shorts earlier than he absolutely took the inventive reins in options. When in character because the aforementioned inept postman or the hapless holidaymaker Monsieur Hulot (actually his most well-known creation, performed in 4 of his six movies), Tati doesn’t even need to do something, not to mention say something, to make the viewer really feel uplifted. His genius was not solely to impress amusing mishaps from banal conditions but additionally to lend a sure pathos to grander questions – be it man-versus-machine and the modernization of France, rising consumerism, or the mores of sure social and political courses.

There was tenacity and brains behind these humorous bones, too, as proven by his resourcefulness in funding movies and making the massive 'mini-city' set for his acknowledged masterpiece, 1967's Playtime, once more that includes Monsieur Hulot. The affect of Tati on subsequent generations of filmmakers and comedians is obvious everybody from Steven Spielberg to Rowan Atkinson, whose Mr Bean character, he says, was influenced by Tati displaying “how a comic situation can be developed as purely visual”. Yet Tati doesn’t appear to be talked about in extolled tones today, actually not by youthful generations of French folks… although he’s clearly France's Chaplin or Keaton.

For a full appraisal of Tati's life and work, the must-read is scholar David Bellos' good biography, Jacques Tati: His Life and Art. Better nonetheless, watch all of his movies in chronological order, and recognize this gifted, joy-giving maverick of the flicks.

From France Today Magazine

The Iconic Jacques Tati