September 2014, arsenal cinema

Classics Not Just For Children

LES VACANCES DE MONSIEUR HULOT, 1953

In a nod to the Magical History Tour, we are showing Jacques Tati's LES VACANCES DE MONSIEUR HULOT (Mr Hulot's Holiday, F 1953) in September. Mr Hulot is an endearing man on holiday at a beach resort who innocently causes chaos wherever he goes, particular when he tries to help. Tati used a complex set of different ideas, musical jokes and amusing sound effects for the sound design. The little dialogue there is plays a marginal role, whereby largely incomprehensible fragments of speech as used primarily for accentuation purposes. Mr Hulot says only one word in the entire film: "Hulot". Tati's cinema harks back to the silent era, with Hulot functioning as a modern successor to Charlie Chaplin's tramp, communicating only via body language and gestures. Tati thus discovered the appropriate soundtrack for silent film. "Tati picks up at the point where we left off 40 years ago." (Buster Keaton) (September 4., 11., 18. & 25.)