November 10, 2012

Social being as it distinguishes itself (in Tati) functions in details arrived at precisely, exciting this strange truth even more: being is provided not by "type" but by fatal caricature, by reflex existence; bait as it were for "tableaux vivants": social life as tableau is a cohabitation, or chains of failed gestures ineluctably chosen: social life is figurative. The mystery of this cinema, in addition to its perfection, contains an even more enigmatic thought: each character is defined by perfect execution, and as such are immediately disproportionate, in a few gestures. They exercise their fate, not their action.

Each character still singularly carries some signs of absolute otherness. Nevertheless the world, or burlesque, may not penetrate because it does not offer the slightest fictional duration to unlock -- for extra charm or terror -- those identities.

-Jean-Louis Schefer ,  
excerpt "La Vitrine" (The Showcase),  
Cahiers du cinéma no. 303, Septembre 1979.

No comments: