Buñuel's first "comeback" film since "L'Age d'Or" in 1930 (he made only a few musicals in the interim), "El Gran Calavera" concerns a family's attempts to change the patriarch's somewhat ... See full summary »
Francisco is rich, rather strict on principles, and still a bachelor. After meeting Gloria by accident, he is suddenly intent on her becoming his wife and courts her until she agrees to ... See full summary »
Arturo de Córdova,
Shipwrecked on an uninhabited island, Robinson Crusoe fills his time in either building a shelter for himself, or by reminiscing about the years he spent at sea and the adventures that led ... See full summary »
Celestine, the chambermaid, has new job on the country. The Monteils, who she works for are a group of strange people. The wife is frigid, her husband is always hunting (both animals and ... See full summary »
When the young woman Tristana's mother dies, she is entrusted to the guardianship of the well-respected though old Don Lope. Don Lope is well-liked and well-known because of his honorable ... See full summary »
On 30 September 1659, the aristocratic British Robinson Crusoe's ship sinks and he miraculously survives on a deserted island somewhere in South America. He retrieves a dog, Rex, and cat, Sam, from the shipwreck together with some supplies, weapons, clothes and tools and builds a shelter. He soon learns how to survive by cooking, farming, harvesting the crops. Then the loneliness begins to haunt him, especially after the loss of Rex. When he sees a group of cannibals in the island, tension and fear become part of his life. Later he saves the life of a savage that was going to be eaten by the cannibals; he names him Friday and they become friends. When Robinson Crusoe sees Caucasians on the island, he finds that Captain Oberzo was the victim of a mutiny and he helps him to retrieve his ship. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
The three lead actors all died in 2005. See more »
When Robinson looks at a neighboring island for the first time through his telescope, the scene shown as though looking through the telescope is just a picture of the island - nothing in it moves including the waves. See more »
If anyone in England met such an odd creature as I was in my 18th year of solitude, it must either have frightened them or caused a great deal of laughter.
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Of the many great films Luis Bunuel was involved with, ROBINSON CRUSOE is perhaps his most neglected, but in my view, it is one of his very best movies. Defoe's story of an emissary of white, Christian civilisation suddenly alone in the universe and having to fend for himself, is a wonderful metaphor from which to explore the human condition and spirit, thrust into a world in which, if there is a God, he is seemingly powerless to help or intervene.
As Crusoe returns to his roots, he becomes more and more at one with Nature and his own nature, until the yearned for contact with a fellow human being, provokes fear and terror when it appears likely to happen. But, although his own fear means that his initial treatment of Friday is harsh and cruel, the enslavement of a fellow human being enables Crusoe to see how depraving and corrupting such vile practices are, and eventually he and Friday become friends and comrades, but only when Crusoe realises he must give Friday total and unconditional freedom.
The film contains some of Bunuel's most potent cinema: the feverish dream sequence where Crusoe's father chides him for his adventurous, and, therefore, "wayward" spirit; the scene where he is so desperate to hear another human voice he goes to the Valley of the Echo and shouts a Psalm, and then walks in despair into the sea until his torch is extinguished by the waves; and the final scene where, leaving the island at last with Friday, he looks back for the last time, and hears the ghostly echo of his faithful, but long since dead dog, Rex, barking...
Shot in Pathécolor, some of the scenes are beautiful, whilst others could be improved upon, but the sheer drama and intellectual engagement it provides overcome such minor technical faults, and the whole is wonderfully enhanced by a first-rate score by Anthony Collins and Luis Breton. Dan O'Herlihy as Crusoe carries the entire film, and was quite rightly nominated as "Best Actor" for this role at the 1954 Academy Awards. It is perhaps Bunuel at his most laid-back and subtle, but, believe me, watched in the right frame of mind, (which means forgetting all your preconceptions about the well-known story), it packs as much punch as any of his films. A rare and beautiful gem that is well worth searching out.
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