32 of 33 people found the following review helpful
Sheer beauty from start to finish.,
This review is from: The Jean Vigo Collection (2 disc Collector's Edition) [DVD] (DVD)
Some reputations in cinema are over-flated. So what of Jean Vigo, whose career output consisted of three shorts and one feature?
Widely considered one of the all time great film directors, is his legend really deserved on the strength of one full length film?
Oh yes and then some! His short montages 'A Propos de Nice', and 'Taris', a beautiful portrait of champion swimmer, Jean Taris, show a delightful touch and grace of a film-maker still developing his craft.
But it was his anarchic boarding school short 'Zero de Conduit', that truly showed the world that he was a major talent to watch. Unbelievably fearless for its day (full frontal nudity and swearing), this took the youth versus authority storyline to spectacular new heights and spawned a major (and inferior) remake with Lindsay Anderson's 'If'.
However, it was 'L'Atalante' that sealed Vigo's reputation forever. It was hard to believe that Vigo was only 27 when he made it. The greatest ode to heterosexual love that cinema has ever seen (sorry Dr Zhivago), this is a work of delightful playfulness and subtle erotism. A young couple aboard a floating barge find their honeymoon besieged by fighting and fluffy cats (don't ask). The purity of Vigo's film-making is breath-taking in its purity. If you love cinema in any way, shape or form, you simply have to own this.
Not only that, but the second disc is bursting with goodies. A massive documentary on Vigo covers his life, times and films, a look at the various versions of L'Atalante, interviews with key-players, a biography, posters and more! I just hope one day all DVD's are like this.