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Pierre Etaix (Criterion) (Blu-Ray) (Version française)

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Product Details

  • Format: Black & White, Full Screen, Subtitled, NTSC
  • Language: French
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Region: Region A/1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • MPAA Rating: UNRATED
  • Studio: Criterion
  • Release Date: April 23 2013
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #58,706 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)
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Product Description

A French comedy master whose films went unseen for decades as a result of legal tangles, director-actor Pierre Etaix is a treasure the cinematic world has rediscovered and taken up with relish. His work can be placed in the spectrum of classic physical comedy with that of Jacques Tati and Jerry Lewis, but it also stands alone. These films, influenced by Etaix�s experiences as a circus acrobat and clown and by the silent film comedies he adored, are elegantly deadpan, but as an on-screen presence, Etaix radiates warmth. This collection includes all of his films, including five features, The Suitor (1962), Yoyo (1965), As Long as You�ve Got Your Health (1966), Le grand amour (1969), and Land of Milk and Honey (1971)�most of them collaborations with the great screenwriter Jean-Claude Carri�re (The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie)�and three shorts, Rupture (1961), the Oscar-winning Happy Anniversary (1962), and Feeling Good (1966). Not one of these is anything less than a bracing and witty delight. DIRECTOR-APPROVED SPECIAL EDITION FEATURES � New digital restorations of all five features and three short films � New interview with director Pierre Etaix � New video introductions by Etaix to seven of the films � Pierre Etaix, un destin anim� (2010), a portrait of the life and work of the director by his wife, Odile Etaix � New English subtitle translation � PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by critic David Cairns The Suitor 1962 � 84 minutes � Black & White � Monaural � In French with English subtitles � 1.66:1 aspect ratio Yoyo 1965 � 98 minutes � Black & White � Monaural � In French with English subtitles � 1.66:1 aspect ratio As Long as You�ve Got Your Health 1966 � 68 minutes � Black & White/Color � Monaural � In French with English subtitles � 1.66:1 aspect ratio Le grand amour 1969 � 87 minutes � Color � Monaural � In French with English subtitles � 1.66:1 a spect ratio Land of Milk and Honey 1971 � 76 minutes � Color � Monaural � In French with English subtitles � 1.66:1 aspect ratio

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Francois Michaud-Herbst on Aug. 28 2013
Verified Purchase
For the first time all the Pierre Etaix filmography is available , restored to high quality and available in Bluray
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 8 reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Criterion Needs to be Congratulated! May 3 2013
By Jeffrey H Wang - Published on
Criterion has done it again...I want to personally thank Criterion for taking the time and effort to remastering and releasing the films of Pierre Etaix to the public. Like his mentor Jacques Tati, Etaix is a comic genius whose humor is rooted in the classic comedians of the silent era (Buster Keaton, Chaplin, Harold Lloyd). Also like these comedians, Etaix uses humor to comment upon modern society (or what was considered modern at the time he was working). My personal favorite film out of this collection is Le Grand Amour, which takes the cinema trope of the troubled marriage, and brings it to a brilliantly surreal level. This is, without a doubt, the blu-ray release of the year!
23 of 28 people found the following review helpful
A long time forgotten comedy genius April 9 2013
By Salvador Fortuny Miró - Published on
Passionate music lover since he was a child and of circus world and influenced by the silent screen comedy artists he love - Langdon, Keaton, Laurel & Hardy- great french comedy master Pierre Etaix started his cinematic career in a brief cameo scene of Robert Bresson's Pickpocket and at the side of also comedy genius Jacques Tati. Painter, professional clown - he shared stage with Charlie Rivel in the Medrano, joined Tati at the Olympia, on his show "Jour de fete", became a popular comedian on his country working first in famous salas like "Le cheval d'or" and then with his wife Annie Fratellini as comedy couple - and graphic artist - he drew between others the film posters of Tati's Mon Oncle and Les vacances de Monsieur Hulot - he jumped into film direction and the filming of his own stuff joining Jean-Claude Carriere - whom Etaix considers his script writing teacher - in the short film Rupture(1961),co-directed with Carriere himself. Tagged sometimes as the french Buster Keaton - one of his most beloved and admirated comedy artists with Stan Laurel and Charlie Rivel -probably for his precise "mise-en-scene", exquisite and very calculated sight-gags and his way of acting - Etaix joins in his films slapstick, classic circus routines and acrobatic bits with sophisticated comedy in films plenty of surreal visual invention. His movies also shine for his great taste for the coreographic visual gag and the funny, very creative use of sound and music. This DVD/Blu-Ray collection - as the previous french edition - collects all the flicks of Etaix as director - five feature films and three shorts: Rupture, Happy anniversary and his episode bit and tribute to Hulot "En pleine forme", added originaly by Etaix, with the other 4 comedy sketches, to his first montage for the 1966's premiere of "As long as you're healthy", and later delated for the 1971 re-release. After a long legal battle (20 years) at the side of his friend and usual film collaborator great french scriptwriter Jean-Claude Carriere for the recovery and exhibition of his films, Pierre Etaix extraordinary films has been shown again at the film theaters and finally edited in DVD in what has been in only few years a metheoric resurrection and recognition of the art of this true comedy genius. A wonderful chance to see in wonderfuly restored copies his absolute feature films masterworks: Le soupirant - his feature film debut as director with a plot that reminds in some parts to Buster Keaton's Seven chances -, and YoYo - Etaix's personal favorite and a very beautiful tribute to circus world -, so as his great films Le grand amour - that contains a delightful dreamy scene in which Etaix's bed goes out of his bedroom taking off down the road, stopping to pick up a gorgeous nightied hitchhiker and passing other beds - stopped for repairs, having accidents... -, the episodes movie "As long as you're healthy" - that contains between other brilliant comedy sketches a bedtime Hammer style vampire story - and Pays de cocaigne, a satyrical candid camera documentary shot after the events of May 68 and focused on french people vacations that was surprisingly punished by the critics, stopping during many years Pierre Etaix's film career.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
I saw The Suitor 50 years ago - and never forgot it May 31 2013
By Dean Sigler - Published on
Verified Purchase
I saw The Suitor 50 years ago, and was delighted with the beauty of the film, a series of carefully crafted images that told a simple story with a quiet surface but great underlying emotion. Etaix managed an uneasy balancing act of telling a comedic story without making his protagonist a clown.

Now, with the re-release of all his films, I find that Etaix was literally a clown at one time, and brought that background to film. So far, I've watched The Suitor, Yoyo (in which Etaix' background is a major aspect of the plot - a rich kid who runs off to join the circus) and two highly inventive short films. All are beautifully filmed on low budgets, but the Blu-Ray restoration helps show the highly polished works that they are.

I would recommend these films to anyone who enjoys Jacques Tati (Etaix's mentor) or Bill Forsyth movies. They are in that quiet spirit, but evoke hearty laughter.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Who is Pierre Etaix? Someone you should know. Feb. 25 2014
By JLR - Published on
The only thing worse than a filmmaker not be taken seriously by critics or moviegoers is a filmmaker generally ignored by both. Critics hate Michael Bay, but at least he's well-known, and Douglas Sirk is scoffed at by the moviegoers, but at least he's respected in the academia. Pierre Etaix is another story: he was virtually ignored by even the most sophisticated film critics and he was on the verge of being forgotten by the most strident of movie lovers. This was mostly because of a bitter legal nightmare, which prevented his movies from being widely available in America for over a couple of decades. It also didn't help that his movies had yet to be restored and thus looked every bit as blemished as most of the unprotected comedy shorts of the silent era. But after a long legal battle, it is finally over. Pierre Etaix's movies are not only available in this fantastic Criterion box set; they are available in pristine visual and audio quality. As an added bonus, Etaix's feature-length movies are accompanied with all his short films. Beautifully restored and packaged, the films of Pierre Etaix have never looked this good since their release in the 60s.

I didn't hear about Pierre Etaix, until I read that his work had been compared to Jacques Tati and Buster Keaton. Since I am a fan of both filmmakers and since I heard that Etaix was an influence on the likes of David Lynch, Terry Gilliam and Woody Allen, I looked into it. I must confess, I was hesitant to buy the Criterion box set since I did not want to spend my job money on something that had the potential to disappoint me. But once I finished watching "The Suitor", my qualms were erased. Then when I saw "Yoyo" and "Milk and Honey", I was in a state of elation. In the end, I couldn't be any happier to spend $40.

Critics have compared Pierre Etaix to Keaton and Tati, which is an appropriate comparison, but I would also add that his work blends the free-form anarchy of the Marx Brothers, the political subtexts of Rene Clair comedies, the surrealistic imagery of silent Bunuel and the circus-like atmosphere of early Fellini. Telling you this would make you feel this his work is artsy-fartsy nonsense, but nothing could be further from the truth. Even if you don't like French comedies, you'll love this box set. All the movies and shorts are absolutely fantastic - superbly directed, riotously funny and subversively witty. Even experimental movies like "Land of Milk and Honey" (a documentary feature that plays like a darker "Mr. Hulot's Holiday" and thus outraged many critics) and the four-part "As Long as You've Got Health" have the charms that have sadly disperse in today's comedy world. As a result, the laughs are plentiful at first viewing, but the rewards become great in second or third.

Besides the outstanding digital transfers, the box set comes with a healthy supply of bonus features that does the director justice. Each of the films are accompanied by an introduction of Pierre Etaix, who comes across as a warm, modest but insightful person. And there's also an enjoyable one-hour documentary on the director that's located on the first Blu-Ray disc.

As I stated before, I didn't want to purchase this box set, but I'm glad I did. And with a Jacques Tati box set rumored to be released this year, it's safe to say that I'll be in comedy heaven very, very shortly. Pierre Etaix was cruelly ignored these past few years, but now his movies are given newer life, thanks to Criterion. Etaix is a comedy genius to rival Chaplin, Keaton, Hardy and Tati, and now his work is available for everyone to see. For comedians and comedy filmmakers alike, this box set is pure nirvana.

Strongest recommendation to buy (and steal) at all costs.
Hidden Tresures March 7 2014
By Sybille Kutter - Published on
Verified Purchase
Pierre Etaix, known as clown and co-author and illustrator for Jaques Tati's "Mon Oncle" is best as his own director
and protagonist. Very good BlueRay edition with booklet!