Meaning and Madness: Close-Up on Luis Buñuel's "Viridiana" and "The Exterminating Angel"

Close-Up is a column that spotlights films now playing on Mubi. Luis Buñuel's Viridiana (1961) is showing June 17 - July 17 and The Exterminating Angel (1962) is showing June 18 - July 18, 2017 in the United Kingdom.ViridianaIt’s impossible to avoid describing the films of Spanish director Luis Buñuel as “surreal,” and yet to do so is woefully insufficient. This is for two reasons. In the first place, Buñuel never made one kind of film. In the second place, even his strangest films deal with social reality.Early in his career Buñuel did associate himself with the Surrealist art movement. Among his first productions were the infamous Un chien Andalou (1929) and L'âge d'or (1930), experimental narratives co-written by Salvador Dali in which bizarre and violent psychosexual incidents connect via absurd dream logic. It’s worth bearing in mind that the Surrealists never meant “surreal” to act as a mere label for the uniquely strange.
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