1900 – 1983
Who was Luis Buñuel?
When Luis Buñuel died at age 83, his obituary in the New York Times called him "an iconoclast, moralist, and revolutionary who was a leader of avant-garde surrealism in his youth and a dominant international movie director half a century later". His first picture—made in the silent era—was called "the most famous short film ever made" by critic Roger Ebert, and his last film—made 48 years later—won him Best Director awards from the National Board of Review and the National Society of Film Critics. Writer Octavio Paz called Buñuel's work "the marriage of the film image to the poetic image, creating a new reality...scandalous and subversive".
Often associated with the surrealist movement of the 1920s, Buñuel created films from the 1920s through the 1970s. His work spans two continents, three languages, and nearly every film genre, including experimental film, documentary, melodrama, satire, musical, erotica, comedy, romance, costume dramas, fantasy, crime film, adventure, and western. Despite this variety, filmmaker John Huston believed that, regardless of genre, a Buñuel film is so distinctive as to be instantly recognizable, or, as Ingmar Bergman put it, "Buñuel nearly always made Buñuel films".
- If alcohol is queen, then tobacco is her consort. It's a fond companion for all occasions, a loyal friend through fair weather and foul. People smoke to celebrate a happy moment, or to hide a bitter regret. Whether you're alone or with friends, it's a joy for all the senses. What lovelier sight is there than that double row of white cigarettes, lined up like soldiers on parade and wrapped in silver paper? I love to touch the pack in my pocket, open it, savor the feel of the cigarette between my fingers, the paper on my lips, the taste of tobacco on my tongue. I love to watch the flame spurt up, love to watch it come closer and closer, filling me with its warmth.
- In any society, the artist has a responsibility. His effectiveness is certainly limited and a painter or writer cannot change the world. But they can keep an essential margin of non-conformity alive. Thanks to them the powerful can never affirm that everyone agrees with their acts. That small difference is important.
- I can only wait for the final amnesia, the one that can erase an entire life.
- Tobacco and alcohol, delicious fathers of abiding friendships and fertile reveries.
- A paranoiac, like a poet, is born, not made.
- The decline of the aperitif may well be one of the most depressing phenomena of our time.
- All my life I've been harassed by questions: Why is something this way and not another? How do you account for that? This rage to understand, to fill in the blanks, only makes life more banal. If we could only find the courage to leave our destiny to chance, to accept the fundamental mystery of our lives, then we might be closer to the sort of happiness that comes with innocence.
- In the name of Hippocrates, doctors have invented the most exquisite form of torture ever known to man: survival.
- You have to begin to lose your memory, if only in bits and pieces, to realize that memory is what makes our lives. Life without memory is no life at all, just as an intelligence without the possibility of expression is not really an intelligence. Our memory is our coherence, our reason, our feeling, even our action. Without it, we are nothing.
- Fortunately, somewhere between chance and mystery lies imagination, the only thing that protects our freedom, despite the fact that people keep trying to reduce it or kill it off altogether.
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- Feb 22, 1900
- Also known as
- Luis Bunuel
- Luis Buñuel
- Luis Buñuel Portolés
- The Scourge of the Bourgeoisie
- Louis Bunuel
- Jeanne Buñuel
(1925 - 1983/07/29)
- Jeanne Buñuel
- Complutense University of Madrid
- Jul 29, 1983
on July 23, 2013