Jour de fête (1949)
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- Jour de Fête
- 70 min.
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Jacques Tati's first feature is Jour de fête (The Big Day), a nearly plotless throwback to silent era comedies as only Tati could keep making them. He plays a bumbling mailman in a small rural town where everybody knows everybody, on the day of fete. Village life is another of Tati's trademarks, and he fills the first act with character introductions, enlivened by lightly comic gags. By the time the fete is underway, you feel like you know all these people. From a personal perspective, it's very interesting how rural French accents have sonorities similar to French Canada's, but I still needed the subtitles as Tati's mumbling is always approaching the realm of sound effect. The final act, which is what most synopses dwell on, is a remake (with some reused shots) of a previous short, L'école des facteurs (The School for Postmen), still, though Jour de fête meanders a lot more, it's a more complete experience and no simple (I say simple...) sketch.
Wasn't DTC supposed to only include films that aren't on TSP?
Turner Classic Movies showed what was called the color version of this movie as it was originally made. But there is no color in the first 30 minutes of the film. When color does appear about 30 mins in, the color is used only to highlight signs and banners, not the entire scene. Additionally, the black and white tends to degrade and get grainy.
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In 6 official lists
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This movie ranks #155 in Halliwell's Top 1000: The Ultimate Movie Countdown
This movie ranks #160 in Geoff King's Film Comedy
This movie ranks #190 in BFI's 360 Classic Feature Films Project
This movie ranks #291 in Jonathan Rosenbaum's Essential Cinema
This movie ranks #775 in TSPDT's 1,000 Greatest Films: 1001-2000
This movie ranks #856 in The Criterion Collection