Viridiana by Luis Buñuel |Luis Buñuel, Silvia Pinal, Fernando Rey, Francisco Rabal | 37429212622 | DVD | Barnes & Noble
Viridiana

Viridiana

5.0 1
Director: Luis Buñuel

Cast: Luis Buñuel, Silvia Pinal, Fernando Rey, Francisco Rabal

     
 
Arch surrealist Luis Buñuel always enjoyed a succès de scandale, and he rarely created a greater one than 1961's Viridiana, in which he returned to his native Spain for his first film there since Franco took power, and seemingly had a lovely time biting the hand that fed him. Viridiana has never enjoyed the broad circulation it deserves on home

Overview

Arch surrealist Luis Buñuel always enjoyed a succès de scandale, and he rarely created a greater one than 1961's Viridiana, in which he returned to his native Spain for his first film there since Franco took power, and seemingly had a lovely time biting the hand that fed him. Viridiana has never enjoyed the broad circulation it deserves on home video, so any DVD release would be worthy of praise, but The Criterion Collection has (as usual) gone the extra mile to treat this masterpiece with richly earned respect. Viridiana has been transferred to disc in its original theatrical aspect ratio of 1.66:1, and has also been enhanced for anamorphic play on widescreen monitors. While there is some noticeable emulsion scratching during the first few minutes of the film, for the most part the source material looks very good, and the transfer is richly detailed (with a lovely palate of grey tones) as well as pin-sharp and brought to disc with a robust bit rate. The audio is mastered in Dolby Digital Mono and sounds nearly as good as the film looks; the dialogue is in Spanish, with optional English-language subtitles. Criterion has typically given this release a healthy portion of relevant bonus material. A profile of Buñuel created for French television in 1964 is included, and boasts interviews with a number of friends and colleagues as well as Buñuel himself, who seems to revel in his persona as a charming iconoclast. An interview with leading lady Silvia Pinal also appears, as does a chat with author Richard Porton, who shares his thoughts on Buñuel's films. An amusingly overstated trailer promoting Viridiana's American release rounds out this package, along with a 30-page booklet which includes an essay by Michael Wood and an interview with Buñuel. Once again, Criterion has given a landmark of European cinema a new lease on life in the North American home-video market, and this DVD is a must for anyone with even a passing interest in Buñuel and his films.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Mark Deming
One wonders just what Francisco Franco and the leaders of his regime were thinking when they invited arch surrealist and stubborn anti-Fascist Luis Buñuel back to the land of his birth to make Viridiana. Buñuel had made a career out of confronting his audiences and defying creative authority, and anyone who imagined that he had meekly begun sleeping with the enemy was in for a shock. Viridiana was a gleefully blasphemous tirade against Catholicism and the Spanish bourgeoisie that proved something of an embarrassment to Spain despite winning top honors at the 1961 Cannes Film Festival. Fernando Rey, one of Buñuel's favorite actors in his late period, is deliciously sleazy yet refined as Don Jaime; Rey's easy charm and understated wit are the perfect match for the elegantly corrupt man whose sense of propriety does not rule out drugging and seducing his niece, who happens to be a nun. Silvia Pinal's performance as Viridiana often suggests that she isn't entirely in on the joke, but the distance works in her favor, as the young novitiate seems blissfully unaware first of her uncle's designs upon her, and later of the contempt that the beggars and street people she tries to help feel for her. The final scene -- in which the beggars freeze into a recreation of The Last Supper as a filthy woman "photographs" them by lifting her skirts -- is, along with Simon of the Desert, one of Buñuel's strongest and funniest anti-clerical moments. Like the best of Buñuel's work, Viridiana is smart, witty, deeply cutting, and thoroughly uncompromised, a fitting bit of revenge from an old Loyalist against the dictator who defeated him. Buñuel would have the last laugh yet again when he returned to Spain nine years later to make Tristana, a fitting companion piece to Viridiana.

Product Details

Release Date:
05/23/2006
UPC:
0037429212622
Original Release:
1961
Rating:
NR
Source:
Criterion
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[B&W, Wide Screen]
Time:
1:31:00
Sales rank:
27,297

Special Features

New, restored high-definition Digital transfer; New video interviews with actress Silvia Pinal and author Richard Porton; Excerpts from a 1964 episode of Cinéastes de Notre Temps on Luis Buñuel's early career; U.S. theatrical trailer; New and improved English subtitle translation; Plus: A booklet featuring Michael Wood and an interview with Buñuel

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Silvia Pinal Viridiana
Fernando Rey Don Jaime
Francisco Rabal Jorge
Margarita Lozano Ramona
Victoria Zinny Lucia
Teresa Rabal Rita
Maruda Isabert Actor
Juan Garcia Tienda Actor
José Calvo Beggar
Jose Manuel Martin Beggar
Luis Heredia Beggar
Joaquin Roa Beggar
Lola Gaos Beggar
Alicia Jorge Barriga Beggar
Palmira Guerra Beggar
Joaquin Mayol Beggar
Sergio Mendizabal Beggar
Milagros Tomas Beggar

Technical Credits
Luis Buñuel Director,Screenwriter
Jose Fernandez Aguayo Cinematographer
Julio Alejandro Screenwriter
Juan Buñuel Screenwriter
Francisco Canet Art Director
Pedro del Rey Editor
Ricardo Munoz Suay Producer

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Virdiana
1. Logos/Opening Credits [1:56]
2. Uncle Don Jaime [3:56]
3. A Bed on the Floor [2:31]
4. "Just Pull Hard" [2:51]
5. Sleepwalker [3:08]
6. The Wedding Dress [7:29]
7. Rita Sees the Black Bull [5:00]
8. "So You Won't Forgive Me?" [6:42]
9. "Something Terrible Has Happened" [2:59]
10. Mother Superior [3:09]
11. New Residents [5:12]
12. Two Meals [6:09]
13. Don Jorge and Viridiana [2:02]
14. Out on the Land [7:20]
15. "So You Do Like Her" [7:27]
16. The Last Supper [8:49]
17. Hallelujah Chorus [6:35]
18. "Kill Him!" [3:13]
19. Shuffling the Deck [4:31]
20. Color Bars [:00]

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Viridiana 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago