Luis Buñuel

Luis Bunuel has been looked at as one of the most scandalous of all filmmakers, ever since he created his radical surreal masterpiece Un Chien Andalou with artist Salvaldor Dali way back in 1929. Bunuel had a streak of pessimism and nihilism, presenting the cruel, bleak and destructive views of human existence. And yet his films are never bitter, angry or lacking charm. First and foremost Bunuel was a playful cynic, a satirist and a master at black comedy, who simply enjoyed mocking those who took themselves way too seriously. Throughout the 30’s and early 40’s Bunuel served as a documentarian, getting deeply involved with the political ideas in pre-Civil War Spain. In 1946 Bunuel became an unemployed husband and father, and after being fired by New York’s Museum of Modern Art because of thoughts of being a communist, he decided to take his family to Mexico. Luckly when arriving Bunuel was hired to direct a film and it was during this time between the years of 1946 and 1964 that Bunuel made a total of twenty films; all were made under short schedules and a small budget. His most internationally praised film during his period in Mexico was Los Olvidados (1950), which told a unapologetic portrayal of poverty, crime and social realism in the slums of Mexico city. In 1961 Luis Buñuel shot his greatest film Viridiana within his native Spain, and it was the first film he had made since his departure for the United States and Mexico in 1939. When originally released the film caused a tremendous stir within the Catholic world, as the Spanish government banned the film for 16 years and ordered all existing negatives to be destroyed. Buñuel went on to make several more films in Mexico, most famously The Exterminating Angel (1962), before making a permanent move to France to film Belle de Jour (1967), which is considered by critics to be one of the most erotic and sexiest films ever made. When Bunuel directed The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie in 1972, its unconventional plot structure linked with surrealistic dream sequences became Bunuel’s most successful film, winning the Oscar for Best Foreign Language film. Bunuel believed most people were hypocrites, especially the wealthy, comfortable and the banal. The bourgeoisie middle class were primarily those he enjoyed tormenting throughout his later films; mostly through the social ritual of dinner. In the later half of his career Bunuel continued making films including the Phantom of Liberty (1974) and the Obscure Object of Desire (1977), all before finally retiring at the age of 77 in 1982. Luis Bunuel was an anarchist, masochist, fetishist, and anti-clerical, whose extraordinary filmography can be recognized immediately after a few frames. When Luis Buñuel died at age 83, his obituary in the New York Times called him “an iconoclast, moralist, and revolutionary who was a leader of avant-garde surrealism in his youth and a dominant international movie director half a century later.”

Luis Buñuel
Luis Bunuel Featured Films
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Articles and Essays on Luis Buñuel

Un Chien Andalou (1929)

Within the world of artistry, tapping into the dreams and the unconscious mind have always been a fascinating theme to interpret and explore, and some of the great artists focus a lot of their ideas and theories in trying to understand the illogical mysteries of the conscious and unconscious. The great Spanish director Luis Bunuel once was asked what […]


Exterminating Angel, The (1962)

Luis Bunuel’s The Exterminating Angel is a cynical and macabre satire on the slow and deteriorating breakdown of human civilization, as Bunuel takes several wealthy bourgeois guests and purposely traps them all in an over populated room, which is similar to using mice to conduct a social experiment. At first these guests stay civilized, level-headed and continue using […]


Belle de Jour (1967)

Luis Bunuel’s erotic masterpiece Belle de Jour is one of the sexiest films ever made. It tells the story of a woman named Severine played by the beautiful legendary actress Catherine Deneuve who is a sexually repressed and deeply unsatisfied bourgeois Paris housewife, who finds erotic liberation through psychosexual fetishes and fantasies working at a part-time brothel. She is a woman […]


Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie, The (1972)

All characters that are in a Luis Bunuel film are psychologically trapped. They are trapped in his universe of utter hell, and for are entertainment we watch as they desperately try to break free, with us knowing they cannot. Luis Bunuel has been one of the most cynical directors ever since he created his radical surreal […]


The Trailer for Luis Bunuel’s Viridinia