One of my favourite films is the Jacques Tati film “Mr.Hulot’s Holidy” (Les Vacances de M.Hulot). The version I have on tape is the so called " English " version which is about 90 mins long. I have read that there exists a longer , by 15 minutes , “French” version with a differant sound/music track. Has anybody viewed this longer version and was the director right to make the cuts for the shorter version ?
I just bought a version but it is at home and I don’t know what version it is, but I’m hoping it is in French with English subtitles,and I don’t know if it is longer, but I’ll look when I get home and let you know. You can get Tati’s other films from a good place called Facets Multimedia in Chicago. Just enter these three words and see if you can find it, as this is just as easy as some long address.
I’ve been very satisfied with their products and they have almost everything. Tati’s other films are just as interesting, such as Mon Oncle, Traffic (not the current one by somebody else), and others.
I’ve never heard of a different cut of the movie. I found a version for sale from a french company
Les vacances de Monsieur Hulot
and the running time of this version is 83 minutes.
N.B. the link above goes directly to the video but has some of the “frames” removed from the site. To browse the site you should start at their home page
It’s been a while since I saw it, but the version I saw didn’t ahve any subtitles; the French characters spoke French, and the English characters spoke English - or am I just confused?
The orginal release was listed at 114 minutes, but apparently this was cut to about 90 min. by Tati himself shortly after release, although some French sources also list running times varying from 91 to 100 minutes. In addition, the music track was replaced sometime in the '60’s. One or more of the shorter cuts is what is shown in France today (I’ve seen the 90min version at least three times at theatres in Paris). The version dubbed into English (this also was supervised by Tati), is listed at 86 minutes.
Regardless of length, a French version is preferable if you can find it; except for a few muttered comments by some of the characters, the film has almost no dialogue, and is easily understandable without subtitles or dubbing.
Tati had a totally unique style and I can highly recommend Jour de Fete, Mon Oncle and Playtime, in addition to the above.
While Playtime is one of the greatest comedies ever made, do not, under any circumstances, watch the video. The original film was done in 70 mm on a big screen, and you need to see it on a big screen. The one video I saw was pan and scan, which totally trashed a good portion of the jokes, and the small screen makes it difficult to see what’s going on. Tati filled each frame with several jokes simultaneously, which gets lost when not projected on a large screen.
I’m afraid this is a film that will be badly neglected, simply because few people will be able to see it in the format it was intended. Letterboxing would probably help, but not enough.
How about TRAFFIC? I just bought it and now I’m afraid to watch it lest it has been treated like you say the other one was!
I only saw Traffic on the big screen (when it first came out), so I can’t say for sure. However, it wasn’t shot in 70mm so probably should be OK on video.
While in France last year I managed a visit to the small sea-side town where “M.Hulots Holiday” was filmed in the early 50’s.The location is St-Marc-sur-Mere in southern Brittany. The hotel is still there with a few small alterations. On the sea front there is a statue of M.Hulot,hands on hips, looking out to sea. The beach is now called “M.Hulot Plage” and on all the lamp-posts along the main street there are banners with scenes from the film. Well worth a visit if you are in the area.
Rocket88, I read your post with interest. However the shortest running time you mention is 90 minutes. however the DVD for sale at the link I mentioned above shows a running time of 83 minutes.
Where did you get your information, and what about this 83 minute version?