Buñuel: Difficult and Rewarding?

May 13, 2008 at 9:55 am 6 comments

I watched The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie last night, and I realized that the only other Buñuel film I’ve seen is his collaboration with Dali on Un chien andalou.

TDCOTB has a surreal meandering charm, and I wonder if Buñuel’s earlier Spanish films have a similar feel. I cancelled my Netflix for the time being, so I guess I’ll have to wait to check these out. I feel like TDCOTB is a lot like Godard’s films for me – at sometimes difficult but ultimately rewarding. However, The difference with TDCOTB and most of Godard is the absurdity of Buñuel’s film is also it’s charm.


Entry filed under: Movies.

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  • 1. alex  |  May 13, 2008 at 11:08 am

    I’m curious as to what you’d think of Viridiana, perhaps his most highly regarded film. As you know, Discreet Charm was something of a revelation for me, but after seeing the above and Belle de jour [and something else (?)], I think I might just be a pretentious ass. In fact, I know it.

    That said, there is a lot more of his stuff to watch. What troubles me though is his relentless attack on Catholicism. Perhaps once interesting, today seems…well, kind of boring. I simply don’t care. I find that kind of hostility really distracting. I think the characters suffer a lack of depth and are more akin to screaming puppets. Furthermore, there is a kind of self-conscious penchant for the avant garde, though not as nearly as obnoxious as with later Godard. While Breathless is so brilliantly fun, his other works are kind of like watching Cameron Crowe jerking off to himself in the mirror (e.g. Elizabethtown).

    Perhaps you’ll disagree with me, but for my money I think Orson Welles takes the prize. He did stuff simply because he thought it was cool. It just happened to be avante garde.

  • 2. Kiala  |  May 13, 2008 at 12:57 pm

    I’ve only seen Los Olvidados.

    Anyway, I liked it.

    Anais Nin and henry Miller were crazy for Bunuel. They liked all that experimaental dreamy surrealism, like Apache dances and that pianist, what was his name? Debussey.


    Anyway, it was an exciting time period. I like all those Montparnasse people. Especially the photographers, like Man Ray and Brassai.

  • 3. Kiala  |  May 13, 2008 at 12:57 pm

    Henry. Stoopid capitals.

  • 4. Kiala  |  May 13, 2008 at 12:58 pm


    Stoopid spelling.

  • 5. melissalion  |  May 13, 2008 at 4:04 pm

    I have no idea what this means.

    I’ve read Bachelard. And Walter Benjamin. I’m still smart, right?

  • 6. Robert  |  May 13, 2008 at 5:25 pm

    I like the Orson Welles – because he’s AMERICUN! Yeah.. Godard’s stuff that bugs me is super masturbatory self-indulgent (although, I would rather watch Weekend 3 times in a row than suffer through Elizabethtown again).

    And Kiala and Melissa – you guys are name dropping like mad and I can’t follow. You have the knowledge… I have the Google.

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