The Restoration of Forza Bastia (aka L’Île en Fête), a Jacques Tati’s unfinished project, took place at the beginning of the 2000’s. His daughter, Sophie Tatischeff, edited (with Florence Bon) what was available from his 1978 documentary shooting of the SEC Bastia VS PSV Eindhoven football match during the finals of the European Cup. As the obscure Bastia, a Corsican team, was preparing to take on the far more celebrated Eindhoven, club founder, Gilberto Trigano, asked Tati to document.
The unprecedented presence of Bastia becomes a social, cultural event, bringing all together, even those who do not seem like fans, within the jubilant city. Candid observation-type of recreation being at the very heart of Tati’s fictional body of work, the significant difference lies in the fact that, through Yves Agostine, Henri Clairon and Alain Pillet’s lens, he reacts to situations instead of exposing them in his usual type of pantomime choreography.
Though Forza Bastia is at times like a draft, there is a signature in its ways of capturing furtive moments. The people, the rituals and human behavior are highlighted as, for Tati, the match is simply not the real issue.