Jean Vigo’s wonderful film L’Atalante would be his first full-length film, and his last. Because of the late, wet nights he worked filming it, he soon after developed a fever (he had already been suffering from tuberculosis) and died at the age of 29. Moreover, he had fought deep battles with the Gaumont Film Company who were to distribute it. And since he was too ill to cut the final version, the company re-edited it severely and eventually reedited it down to 65 minutes.
The version Criterion now presents is a semi-restored original, which they state in the credits, is as close to the original as possible.