Jour de Fete

1949, Comedy, 1h 20m

22 Reviews 2,500+ Ratings

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Jour de Fete Photos

Movie Info

In a small French town, the local postman, scatterbrained and bumbling François (Jacques Tati), spends his working hours casually delivering the mail, while being the subject of the townsfolk's teasing. When a traveling carnival arrives in town, a drunken François is goaded into watching a film depicting the efficiency of the U.S. Postal Service. Inspired by the footage, the hapless François sets out on his bicycle to become just like the mail carriers in the United States.

Cast & Crew

Jacques Tati
François le facteur
Marine Vallée
Jeannette
Robert Balpo
Le châtelain
Delcassan
La commère
René Wheeler
Writer
Pierre Tati
Assistant Producer
Jacques Mercanton
Cinematographer
Jacques Sauvageot
Cinematographer
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News & Interviews for Jour de Fete

Critic Reviews for Jour de Fete

All Critics (22) | Top Critics (4) | Fresh (22)

  • Jour De Fête sees Tati building out the world around François, finding humor in the leisurely pace of country living.

    November 3, 2014 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • The originality of its design makes Tati's cinema unfold as it were a series of Looney Tunes episodes envisioned by Robert Altman.

    January 2, 2008
  • Quote not available.

    January 1, 2000 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • Quote not available.

    January 1, 2000 | Rating: 4/4
  • ...freewheelingly captures a traveling carnival's effects on a small French village.

    January 7, 2021 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
  • Clumsy, klutzy, and keen on showing his fellow townsfolk that he can modify his techniques as well, sends him off on a drunken dash through town, of course leading to a multitude of snafus, the phrase "that takes the cake," a constant refrain.

    November 3, 2020 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • Jour De Fête sees Tati building out the world around François, finding humor in the leisurely pace of country living.

    November 3, 2014 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • The originality of its design makes Tati's cinema unfold as it were a series of Looney Tunes episodes envisioned by Robert Altman.

    January 2, 2008
  • Quote not available.

    January 1, 2000 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • Quote not available.

    January 1, 2000 | Rating: 4/4
  • ...freewheelingly captures a traveling carnival's effects on a small French village.

    January 7, 2021 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
  • Clumsy, klutzy, and keen on showing his fellow townsfolk that he can modify his techniques as well, sends him off on a drunken dash through town, of course leading to a multitude of snafus, the phrase "that takes the cake," a constant refrain.

    November 3, 2020 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Jour de Fete

  • Jan 14, 2013
    This was a different kind of comedy, I'm not sure how to describe it, really. Problem was, it's not very funny. It was sort of quirky in a very old fashioned kind of way. It felt a lot older than it was even.
    Aj V Super Reviewer
  • Apr 24, 2012
    Comedy legend Jacques Tati directs, co-writes and stars in this charming look at a guileless postman bicycling his rounds in a small French village. The film is near plotless, unless you count a late section where Tati's character Francois sees a newsreel about American postal efficiency and strains to accelerate his own work in reply. (This final act is wholly recycled from Tati's 1947 short "School for Postmen.") The laughs depend on sight gags, lightly presented but carefully choreographed, and Francois doesn't speak much. When he does, he adopts a self-involved, thinking-out-loud mutter that barely calls for a response. Chickens, who cackle throughout the film with perverse consistency, arguably have more lines than any human. Francois's bike -- which frequently gets away from him -- accounts for a large chunk of the humor and the rest revolves around his interaction with the playful townsfolk, who alternately cheer on his diligence or try to throw him off course. (Learn to say no to alcohol, Francois!) The lack of story is somewhat wearying, but the film's brisk 79 minutes pass before this becomes a serious problem. "Jour de Fete" was simultaneously shot in both color and black-and-white, and the latter version was the standard for years. However, a restored color edit was finally released in 1995. Given the subtlety of the film's visual humor, it's possible that some jokes are easier to pick up in color. So, don't worry about the ethics of "colorization."
    Eric B Super Reviewer

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