Forza Bastia chronicles a day in Bastia (France). A Corsican island. It’s an important day because it’s April 26, 1978, when Bastia (the soccer team) played PSV Eindhoven. Bastia was an obscure team and the first leg (I had to learn soccer terms) was a tie at zero.
Jacques Tati shot Bastia at the time, but never finished editing it. His daughter, Sophie Tatischeff, came in and fixed it. The result is a very uneven, very long (twenty-seven minutes) collection of footage. If Tatischeff did carry through with Tati’s intent, then he intended Bastia to be boring and not insightful.
It’s about a big deal football match. Of course people are going to be acting weird. Nowhere in any of the footage does Tati (or does Tatischeff) find any moments of real human observation. It’s all obvious, even the quirky stuff.
Forza Bastia should’ve been shorter, would’ve been better.
Directed by Jacques Tati and Sophie Tatischeff; written by Tati; directors of photography, Yves Agostini, Henri Clairon and Alain Pillet; edited by Florence Bon and Tatischeff.
House Specialty chronicles the last few minutes of a day at a pastry shop in a small French town. The short’s credits are incomplete, but it appears the lead–the clerk–is played by Dominique Lavanant. She’s an attractive young woman surrounded either by old men or almost old men. The difference is the almost old men talk about working and the old men just play games at the shop. The similarity is all the men scarf down the tartlets.
Director Tatischeff is very straightforward with her direction, letting the conversations mesh together in the confined space. Characters come and go–with the only female customers being disgusted at the tarlets, which sell out immediately after coming out of the oven.
As the film winds down and Lavanant and her employer send the men home, Tatischeff reveals the further importance of the pastry shop in the town.
It’s sublime stuff.
Written and directed by Sophie Tatischeff; director of photography, Pierre Dupouey; edited by Joëlle Hache; production designer, Denis-Martin Sisteron.
Starring Dominique Lavanant (the clerk), Dédé (a customer) and Gilberte Géniat (the boss).