Monday, November 21, 2011

The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie

Luis Buñuel, France, 1972 (8.6*)
Best Foreign Film (AA)
#99, Top Ranked 1000 Films, 2011 Update, all polls.

Probably the most affable and accessible of the Spanish master’s films, as many are a bit serious or obscure for the average filmgoer. On the surface, this is a comedy about a suburban dinner party.

However, as you would expect from Buñuel, you don’t exactly plan then have a successful dinner party. This story begins innocently enough, but you soon find yourself once again in the mind of an inventive and creative filmmaker, the same one who in his The Exterminating Angel, has guests to a dinner enjoy the meal and the company then find they cannot leave the room.

The dinner party gets delayed by a series of random and spontaneous events that include the hosts having afternoon sex, and a military patrol on war game maneuvers uses the house for a field headquarters.

As usual in his films, what you get out of this is going to depend on what you bring into it, but I wouldn’t look for anything too deep here – I believe this film is more enjoyable than most of his because of that, and for the excellent cast led by Fernando Rey, and the award-winning Stéphane Audran.

Winner of the Foreign Language Film Oscar® for 1972, and six awards total out of 11 nominations

#16 on the Top Ranked Comedy Films of All-Time, 2011 Update


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These are the individual film reviews of what I'm considering the best 1000 dvds available, whether they are films, miniseries, or live concerts. Rather than rush out all 1000 at once, I'm doing them over time to allow inclusion of new releases - in fact, 2008 has the most of any year so far, 30 titles in all; that was a very good year for films, one of the best ever.

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