When in doubt just make an obscure Simpsons reference.

14. L’Atalante (Jean Vigo, 1934)

To be honest I don’t really get this film. Basically a guy and a girl get married, and set sail on L’Atalante, cargo the ship that the dude is captain of. They fight, are separated briefly, and then get back together. All this in 73 minutes. Za?

Some people swear by it, but I just didn’t get it. The only explanation I have read that makes any sense to me is that it’s really simple and that is where the beauty lies. It is a movie without pretension. It’s not like Lawrence of Arabia where it aspired to some epic greatness, rather L’Atalante was just a simple film that only took up an hour of my time. But other than my feeble attempt to comprehend the film I don’t have much to say.

So I will talk a bit about the crazy looking guy in the poster. He is awesome. He works on the boat and is pretty much crazy. He collects junk and has bunch of swank tattoos. He’s loud, gregarious, and abrasive. If at like age 60 I am anything like that guy I will consider my life a success. Ornery, with tattoos, and a passport with lots of stamps, that’s how I wanna end up.

I particularly like the weird accordion-dealy thing he plays. It reminds of Handsome Pete who dances dances for nickels. I wonder if it’s a sailor thing, to be able to play that old-timey accordion. I think that’s my new goal. Learn to play old-timey sailor accordion-dealy. I should probably learn the name too.

On filmaffinity.com I gave the film 7/10, because it was somewhat interesting even if I didn’t get it. I want to revisit it at some point and see if I can learn to understand it.


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