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 ...
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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 »
One of Luis Bunuel's most free-form and purely Surrealist films, consisting of a series of only vaguely related episodes - most famously, the dinner party scene where people sit on ... 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 nature, despite his socialistic views about business and religion. But Don Lope's one weakness is women, and he falls for the innocent girl in his charge, seduces her, makes her his lover, though all the while explaining to her that she is as free as he. But when she acts on this freedom, Don Lope must deal with the consequences of his world-view. Written by
Gary Dickerson <email@example.com>
Luis Buñuel had a mastery of screen technique attained by very few directors. Confronted by the script of Tristana, what contemporary director would know where to start?
Buñuel's attention to detail is extraordinary. Every scene is packed with visual interest. In some strange way, the decor forms an essential part of the structure; it is a facet of Buñuel's unique vision. Moreover, he not only knows exactly when to end a sequence, but how to end it. For instance, when Don Lope (Rey) puts down the dog and walks away, the camera follows not him but the dog: an endearing and brilliant touch, and there are many more. Compelling throughout, even spellbinding.
If this film were a framed picture hanging in a gallery, thousands would come to see it and Buñuel would be acclaimed as a great artist. He was a great artist, in fact, but the cinema is an ephemeral form and people forget. We need to buy the videos and watch these fine movies from time to time, just to remind ourselves that a film can be a significant art form and not merely a commercial product cynically synthesised to extract the largest amount of money from the greatest number of people.
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