Leave the cannoli, take the movies

Review Blog

Mon Oncle

Posted by Jonathan Leithold-Patt on June 7, 2010 at 11:10 PM

MON ONCLE   ****

Jacques Tati


IDEA:   M. Hulot, a bumbling, innocently charming Chaplin-esque figure arrives at his relatives' ultramodern house and finds himself at odds with its sleek superficiality. A critique on technology and modernity, as well as a unique masterclass in inventive visual comedy.


BLURB:  Tati’s fascination with modern rituals, technological functionality, and the ever-widening divide between traditional and contemporary living is here turned into an ingenious series of scrambled situations. Like a Rube Goldberg machine that never stops, mishaps and technical glitches pervading the scene as often as Madame Arpel switches on her ridiculous fish fountain, the film is spectacularly inventive situational comedy tied to ahead-of-its-time commentary. No detail is overlooked; from the immaculately designed, mechanized impracticality of the “modern” house to the ramshackle homeliness of Monsieur Hulot’s apartment and the vision of Old Paris that surrounds it, it is a study in contrasts and carefully modulated visual gags, effortlessly mining the simple rhythms of everyday life to find the organic nonsense within.

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