Jacques Tati, Maria Kimberly, Marcel Fraval, Honore Bostel,

In Traffic, Tati’s Monsieur Hulot is a resourceful automobile salesman en route to an Amsterdam car show, where he will present an elaborate camper on behalf of a Paris firm. Getting there is half the agony in Tati’s apocalyptic vision of mechanized modernity, in which humankind indulges in a perpetual love-hate relationship with its favorite pet, the automobile. Tati’s rigorously composed soundtrack is a dense amalgam of voices, speaking no fewer than four languages, and the assorted noises of cars and other machines. In his inventive sight gags, cars settle back on their haunches like stubborn animals and yawning hoods transform their vehicles into snapping monsters. Add to this Tati’s ironic observations on the mentality of the salespeople who promote these strange creatures, and the result is an intimation, in his ever-controlled manner, of the chaos looming in a world increasingly controlled by Monsieur Machine.

Judy Bloch
  • Jacques Tati
  • Jacques Lagrange
  • Edouard van den Enden
  • French
  • with English subtitles
Print Info
  • Color
  • DCP
  • 97 mins
  • Janus Films

CineFiles is an online database of BAMPFA's extensive collection of documentation covering world cinema, past and present.

View Traffic documents  

In and out of sync (review), Reader (Chicago, Ill.), Fred Camper, 2010

Jacques Tati (program note), Institut Valencià de l'Audiovisual i de Cinematografia Ricardo Muñoz Suay, Román Gubern, 2009

Traffic (program note), San Francisco International Film Festival, 1972

[Traffic] (review), 1971

Traffic (review), Sight and Sound, Nigel Andrews, 1971

Tati back in comic mood for latest Hulot film (article), Los Angeles Times, Mary Blume, 1970

Traffic (program note), American Film Institute

Displaying 7 of 7 publicly available documents.

View all Traffic documentation on CineFiles.