By Ernesto R. Acevedo-Muñoz
Notwithstanding Luis Buñuel, probably the most very important filmmakers of the 20 th century, spent his most efficient years as a director in Mexico, movie histories and feedback always pay little cognizance to his paintings in this interval. the one book-length English-language research of Buñuel's Mexican motion pictures, this booklet is the 1st to discover an important yet missed quarter of this filmmaker's exceptional occupation and therefore to fill a spot in our appreciation and knowing of either Buñuel's success and the historical past of Mexican film.
Ernesto Acevedo-Muñoz considers Buñuel's Mexican films—made among 1947 and 1965—within the context of a countrywide and nationalist movie undefined, evaluating the filmmaker's employment of kinds, genres, personality forms, topics, and strategies to these such a lot attribute of Mexican cinema. during this research Buñuel's motion pictures turn out to be a hyperlink among the Classical Mexican cinema of the Nineteen Thirties in the course of the Nineteen Fifties and the "new" Cinema of the Sixties, flourishing in a time of problem for the nationwide movie and introducing many of the stylistic and conceptual adjustments that may revitalize Mexican cinema.
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Additional info for Buñuel and Mexico: The Crisis of National Cinema
Buñuel’s incorporation into Mexican cinema was originally “generic,” not very political, and his early movies, Gran Casino (1947) and El gran calavera (1949), were distinctly harmless in their apparent submission to the conventions of the musical melodrama and the “social” comedy. These genres themselves, however, were under revision at the time of Buñuel’s incorporation into the Mexican film industry, and Buñuel’s films reflect this revisionist inclination. Furthermore, Buñuel’s move to Mexico was a logical continuation of his filmmaking training.
In other words, it was Un chien andalou and L’Age d’Or that were really (and literally) extraordinary. Una mujer sin amor, for example, Buñuel’s 1951 Mexican melodrama based on Guy de Maupassant’s 1887 novel Pierre et Jean, more logically continued Buñuel’s cultural trajectory and his transition toward popular forms, begun in Hollywood and Madrid in the early 1930s. Even some of Buñuel’s bestknown late-surrealist films (Le Journal d’une femme de chambre, 1963; Belle de jour, 1966; Tristana, 1969; Cet obscur objet du désir, 1977) are genuine offspring of the classical melodramatic tradition in the literature of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries (just like Pierre et Jean).
Urgoiti hired him to produce Filmófono’s home-grown products, giving Buñuel his first handson experience in a decision-making position in commercial film production. According to film historian Manuel Rotellar’s interviews with members of the cast and crew of the Filmófono studios, Buñuel’s only condition was that his involvement with these pictures and his name be kept in complete anonymity, apparently in fear of damaging his reputation as a surrealist. ”29 Director José Luis Sáenz de Heredia, who went on to pursue a notable career in Spanish cinema as the foremost director under Franco, was credited 40 / Chapter 2 as director of Filmófono’s La hija de Juan Simón (1935).
Buñuel and Mexico: The Crisis of National Cinema by Ernesto R. Acevedo-Muñoz