About Buñuel - A propósito de Buñuel

About Buñuel is a documentary directed by José Luis López-Linares and Javier Rioyo about the life of the film director Luis Buñuel premiered on February 22 , 2000 .


The film uses fragments of Buñuel's films, photographs and documents —some unpublished—, Buñuel's own home videos, fragments of his autobiography The Last Sigh (1982) —read in voice-over by actor Pepe Sancho - , and seventy hours of recording in Paris , New York , Los Angeles and Mexico City , which collect the testimony of people who knew him, such as Pepín Bello , Manuel Mindán Manero , Emilio Sanz de Soto , Carlos Saura , Pere Portabella , Francisco Rabal ,Silvia Pinal , Katy Jurado , Lucía Bosé , Michel Piccoli , Ángela Molina , Carole Bouquet , his wife Jeanne Rucar and his co - screenwriter Jean-Claude Carrière , or specialists in his work to investigate the personality and spirit of the work of the Calandino filmmaker , based on academic knowledge (the script is by Agustín Sánchez Vidal , professor of Film History at the University of Zaragoza and specialist in the work of Buñuel) and moving away from the mythification of the typical character of the biopic .

This filmed biographical study avoids falling into the cliché of incardinating his work in the militancy of French surrealism to analyze his origins in Calanda , as the son of a potentate who made his fortune in Cuba and was able to afford an elite education in the Student Residence together to other intellectuals of the generation of '27 such as Federico García Lorca . As Carlos Fuentes points out in the documentary, when the surrealist group began to drift towards political positions, Buñuel investigated the surrealist aspects of the Hispanic cultural tradition - the picaresque , the Celestina , Cervantes, Valle Inclán - (as Max Ernst did in the German one with the fairy tales and epic legends) and he integrated them into Breton's orthodox surrealism, which was just an idea, thus finding a surrealism of unexpected weight due to this contribution . It also investigates the sense of the religiosity of Buñuel and the eroticism of his work.

The artist's personality is drawn, deaf and stubborn like his compatriot Francisco de Goya, with whom clear parallels are established. Despite the rigor with which his biography is treated, the authors declared that their objective was not to make a film for moviegoers, but so that the general public could enjoy it. It is intended, in short, to demystify the idea of ​​a creator only accessible to viewers who know his keys, for fetishists; since his idea of ​​cinema was that of entertainment and fascination, and always according to the authors of the documentary, Buñuel made funny, interesting and daring films, rejecting only the insignificant or banal. López-Linares affirms that Luis Buñuel “learned to live with his contradictions. The contradiction is essential in Buñuel ». His main disciple, the filmmaker Carlos Saura , valued A purpose of Buñuel as a work where his personal world stands out, his Iberian and biting surrealism, violent and sensitive at the same time.


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