Directed by Jacques Tati

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Playtime is a hilarious and gloriously choreographed cinematic masterpiece about the modern city and the confusion it creates. Jacques Tati’s final film, Playtime took three years to complete and famously bankrupted its director. The film follows Monsieur Hulot through a series of absurd scenarios that turn a critical eye on commercialism, entertainment, mass media, tourism, and modernist architecture. Shot in 70mm, Tati constructed a film set so elaborate that it became a facsimile of a functional city.

Playtime will be presented on an outdoor screen on the hill alongside the glass curtain wall of the EMPAC building. 4/2 UPDATE: Due to the winter that won't die, we will be screening Playtime in the warmth of Studio 1 and it will remain FREE!

The film series A Door Ajar, presents enigmatic films that refuse cliché cinematic endings where the hero rides off into the sunset or the wayward soul finds eternal redemption. Instead, these films revel in openness, leaving the door ajar for interpretation after the film ends. The series looks at perception, the desire to create meaning, and the reach for conclusions.

Oraib Toukan and Ala Younis's From the impossibility of one page being like the other will be screened prior to Playtime, as part of the Frieze Film series.

Emily Zimmerman

Jacques Tati began his career as a screenplay writer and actor. In 1949, he created the character of François in Jour de Fête, which won the prize for best screenplay at Venice. In Les Vacances de Monsieur Hulot, he created the awkward and optimistic eponymous character for which he is best known. Tati directed six feature length films, and played the lead role of Monsieur Hulot in four of these. In 1958, Mon Oncle was awarded the Prix Méliès at the Festival de Cannes and an Academy Award for best foreign film. Over a decade later, Tati shot Playtime, a film that did not achieve the commercial success that was hoped for, despite eventually becoming a cult classic. In 1972, Tati directed Trafic, the fourth and last chapter in the Hulot series, followed by Parade in 1974.

Studio 1—Goodman
April 3, 2014, 7:30PM
Return to A Door Ajar

EMPAC 2013-2014 presentations, residencies, and commissions are supported by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Dance Project of the New England Foundation for the Arts (with lead funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation; additional funding from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Community Connections Fund of the MetLife Foundation, and the Boeing Company Charitable Trust), and the New York State Council for the Arts. Special thanks to the Jaffe Fund for Experimental Media and Performing Arts for support of artist commissions.

Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation
National Endowment for the Arts
NEFA - New England Foundation for the Arts
State of the Arts - NYSCA