8.2/10
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66 user 95 critic

Viridiana (1961)

Not Rated | | Drama | 19 March 1962 (USA)
Trailer
2:27 | Trailer
Viridiana, a young nun about to take her final vows, pays a visit to her widowed uncle at the request of her Mother Superior.

Director:

Luis Buñuel
Reviews
2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Silvia Pinal ... Viridiana
Francisco Rabal ... Jorge
Fernando Rey ... Don Jaime
José Calvo José Calvo ... Don Amalio (as Jose Calvo)
Margarita Lozano ... Ramona
José Manuel Martín ... El Cojo (as Jose Manuel Martin)
Victoria Zinny ... Lucia
Luis Heredia Luis Heredia ... Manuel 'El Poca'
Joaquín Roa ... Señor Zequiel (as Joaquin Roa)
Lola Gaos ... Enedina
María Isbert ... Beggar (as Maruja Isbert)
Teresa Rabal ... Rita (as Teresita Rabal)
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Storyline

Viridiana, a young novice about to take her final vows as a nun, accedes, moved purely by a sense of obligation, to a request from her widowed uncle to visit him. Stirred by her resemblance to his late wife, he attempts to seduce her and tragedy ensues. In the aftermath, Viridiana tries to assuage her guilt by creating a haven for the destitute folk who live around her uncle's estate. But little good comes from these good intentions. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

You may not like VIRIDIANA,,,You may very well hate it. You may find it too shocking. BUT THIS WE GUARANTEE - VIRIDIANA will shock your senses like nothing else you have ever seen in a theatre! See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

For the famous The Last Supper scene, the number of homeless people wasn't enough to match the actual amount of men present at The Last Supper, so Buñuel made three crew members dressed like beggars appear on the photo, then disappear. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Mother Superior: Sister Viridiana. Your uncle sent word that he can't come to see you take your vows.
Viridiana: Very well, Mother.
Mother Superior: You seem unconcerned.
Viridiana: I hardly know him. I only met him once, years ago.
Mother Superior: He invites you to visit him.
Viridiana: I'd rather not leave the convent.
Mother Superior: I'm afraid he's in poor health. He's your only relative. You should bid him farewell before taking your vows. You will never see him again.
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Connections

References The Apartment (1960) See more »

Soundtracks

Requiem
Composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
(1791)
See more »

User Reviews

 
Buñuels superb, subversive denial of religious ethics
23 April 2003 | by braugenSee all my reviews

Few film directors have worked with the sheer power and subversiveness that Spanish-born Luis Buñuel have. "Viridiana" is one of the best examples of the exiled Spaniard's feelings towards religious faith and its virtues- or his strong denial of religion as a virtue.

Buñuel started out as a Surrealist, and although he left the Surrealist Circle of Paris lead by André Breton, he always kept elements of Surrealism in his work, to the bitter end. So too in "Viridiana", where dreams play a small, but important part of the narrative, dreams being the Surrealists' main theme as a way of discovering repressed sexuality and aggression. Viridiana is a young nun who is, on the grounds of showing human compassion, talked into visiting her uncle Don Jaime, who is ill. Don Jaime, played by Buñuel regular Fernando Rey, is caring, but perverse. He falls in love with his niece, and does everything with the help of his maid, to keep Viridiana from parting to the convent, including lying to her and seducing her while she is trainquilized.

I am not going to give away all the events of the film, but the corruption of humanity and Christianity are soon evident, as Viridiana tries to help poor beggars and give them a worthy life. Her attempts at Christian charity are only met with self-pity and egocentricity, as the beggars go on a rampage reminiscient of the last supper of Jesus christ and his disciples. Violence, murder, gluttony and rape are all included to make a clear picture of the way the beggars have lost their human virtues to the hardship of poverty. We see the events through Viridiana's eyes, and everything she goes through suggests a broken belief in the goodness of both human beings and the faith she kept for so long.

A masterpiece in revolutionary cinema, this film won the Palm d' Or at Cannes in 1961, and the Spanish Board of Film were all fired afterwards, as Franco's regime could not quite swallow that "Viridiana" was the official Spanish contribution to the Festival.


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Details

Country:

Spain | Mexico

Language:

Spanish | English

Release Date:

19 March 1962 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Viridiana See more »

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Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,843
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Klangfilm-Magnetocord)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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