M. Hulot's Holiday
Already familiar to many, especially following his acclaimed directorial debut Jour De Fete, Jacques Tati came into his own and reached new levels of popularity with 1953's Les Vacances De Monsieur Hulot. The first film to introduce his much-loved alter ego Monsieur Hulot, it sets the pattern for future appearances of the character, throwing the bumbling hero unwittingly into the middle of the action and letting the ensuing mishaps provoke humor ranging from gentle observations to fairly biting satire. The setting this time is a stuffy resort community fond of the peace and quiet that Hulot interrupts without fail. Nearly dialogue-free and driven more by episode than plot (like all of the Hulot films), standout set pieces include a disrupted funeral, an interrupted game of cards, and -- one of Tati's signature bits -- a game of tennis played with rules that can politely be called unconventional. ~ Keith Phipps
- Release Date:
- Original Release:
- Sales rank:
Cast & Crew
|Jacques Tati||Monsieur Hulot|
|Michelle Rolla||The Aunt|
|André Dubois||The Commandant|
|Valentine Camax||The Englishwoman|
|Lucien Frégis||The Hotelkeeper|
|Marguerite Gérard||The Strolling Woman|
|Michèle Brabo||A Vacationer|
|Suzy Willy||The Commandant's Wife|
and post it to your social network
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
See all customer reviews >
You can not just watch this movie one time. You will want to watch it several times as it is so funny and some scenes you can miss as the comedy is so slight. Just a really great comedy.
Hulot is a fully evolved character, oddball though he may appear at first viewing. He may well at first appear as one of modern life's hapless losers, yet in his own world he is happy and content, always on a safari for experiences, happenings, like-minded children and adults who have not lost a child-like sense of wonderment and adventure no matter how large or small (for, they have no yardstick against which to gauge). It's the little things, often accidental, that go on around him that define his existence, as far as the viewer is concerned.
While many professional critics hold that Tati's Mon Oncle is his perfect film, there is no escaping the black-and-white sublimeness that comes from watching Holiday. Crisp cinema shots, crisp editing, characters and their deeds that we recognize from whatever our backgrounds---ahh, yes, an ideal companion, one who's effects on you stay long after the actual visit, and always a welcome return when you see it again.
Tati's work pleases the eyes, the mind, and the imagination. You don't have to understand French to understand Tati. He is a combination of Jerry Lewis, Herold Lloyd, Cantineflas and Cher. You can't watch his work only once and you can't pause his work in mid-streem. Be prepared to be elated.
Understated, unique and extremely funny, Mr. Hulot's Holiday (Les vacances de Monsieur Hulot) is one of the greatest comedies ever to make its way to the silver screen and subsequently to home theatres. For those unfamiliar with the talents of director, writer and star Jacques Tati, this is the perfect opportunity to learn more about the talented and versatile Frenchman. This is a genuine classic - richly deserving of its Oscar nomination and acclaim at Cannes - that can be watched repeatedly by any member of the family young and old, with each viewing revealing something new about both the creator and his work. Then it's time to partake of more of his cinematic gems like Jour de fête, Mon Oncle or Traffic. This DVD- with its additional material like the Tati short Soigne ton gauche from 1936 and the introduction by Monty Python founder Terry Jones - is an absolute gem. While short on dialogue (not essential to carry the plot), this film (despite being originally screened back in 1953)still demonstrates Tati's wonderful usage of ironically placed visuals and situations while delighting audiences with its engaging but simplistically effective musical score. It's a comfort film that keeps drawing you back time and time again. Francais or Anglais - a delight no matter what time of year. Five stars.
Mr. Hulot's Holiday, the first of Jacques Tati's Hulot saga, has a deceptively simple plot: a man leaves Paris to spend a week by the sea. But this man is the stumbling Hulot, arriving in his tiny, noisy, always-breaking-down car, inevitably upsetting the status quo among his fellow vacationers: the Smiths, headed by a proto-type A businessman on the phone more often than with his family; the pretentious bridge fiend Mrs. Gonzales, who seems to wear a smile/sneer most of the time; the lovely Martine, staying with her mentor, Mrs. Dubois, in the guesthouse across the way; several families with children (one Denis, when he's not burning holes in the canvas "teepees" dotting the beach with his magnifying glass, turns it on the stomach of a semi-conscious sunbather); the left-leaning student with glasses and pipe, always reading -- when he's not subjecting Martine to lectures she'd obviously not hear; the delightful British spinster, etc. And then there are the locals: the retired military man who shares his war experiences with anyone willing to listen; the staff at the hotel, the ice cream man whose taffy seems just on the verge of falling off the cart. From the moment he enters the hotel (and, in the midst of unloading, forgets to close the door, letting in the breeze that upsets paperwork, bridge games, etc.), Hulot brings with him unintended chaos and annoys the owner and staff. But he earns the interest of Martine, who finds him more interesting than the other men -- married and single -- who automatically flock to her. But will he get the girl?
Again, simplicity that seems to bring the best of life.
This is a Buster Keaton, Charlie Chaplain, Jerry Lewis comedy...without any of those people. Tati (Actor, Director) is a visual comedy genius who generates more laughter per scene than any movie I've seen. Share this one with your kids AND your parents.