Monsieur Hulot, and Tati’s style in general, really clicked for me here in a way they hadn’t for his preceding two films. Maybe it was because it was less of a shaggy, freeform experience to sink into (though it still was to a degree) and more something buoyed by a throughline, arcs, ideas, themes. Or that it was at least more straightforward about it.
So much of the story, the clash between consumerist signalling and machine-like “efficiency” blocking actual human connections, is told through the exquisite set design, shot compositions, visual contrasts…the sound and music is important, but Tati never privileges the dialogue (or the plot either really) above cinematic elements of the film. The inclusion of many adorable dogs was also a point in the film’s favour. Four pipes, and a fountain.