Formerly "A Movie A Day" :/

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Exterminating Angel - 1962 - Dir. Buñuel

All right, so when I first learned of the man Luis Buñuel, I looked him up on the Internet. The first picture of his that I was interested in? The Exterminating Angel. Easily, I wanted nothing more than to see this picture. Naturally, it was impossible to find. At least, impossible for a young college student who knew next to nothing about getting his hands on hard to find films. So now... almost six years later (Jesus Christ)... it sneaks up behind me and is released on DVD. I had exhausted my interest in Buñuel about a year after it began, watching EVERYTHING I could and reading what I could/his autobiography. Sometimes I forget how heavily he influenced my writing and my idea of film and art. So I'm a little pissed I've seen Exterminating Angel so many years later, I can't appreciate it the way six years of waiting has built it up to be. Anyway... Angel is classic Buñuel, around Viridiana where he really started to create a form, this is Luis sharpening his knife. You can see bits of his later work. The quiet surrealism. The upper class (although really that was his whole career). It feels reminiscent of his Discreet Charm era or I suppose that should be reversed. The story? Dinner guests find themselves trapped in their Host's Living Room. As hours become days, they fight for their survival and their humanity. Buñuel plays a lot with repetition. Perhaps most noticeably when the dinner guests arrive twice and have the same set of dialogue, but the script is peppered with repeating sets of dialogue. And I fucking LOVE repeating dialogue. Almost as much as I love a pack of sheep wandering around the mansion. SHEEEEP! While Exterminating Angel might be a disappointment for those of us who have waited six years. It's still Buñuel doing what he does best, taking a dinner party and making it weird as all hell. ;)


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