“I should like to make even the most ordinary spectator feel that he is not living in the best of all possible worlds.” – Luis Buñuel

Today is Luis Buñuel’s birthday!

From Luis Buñuel’s autobiography My Last Sigh:

Connoisseurs who like their martinis very dry suggest simply allowing a ray of sunlight to shine through a bottle of Noilly Prat before it hits the bottle of gin. They claim that the making of a dry martini should resemble the Immaculate Conception, in which the generative power of the Holy Spirit is said to have pierced the Virgin’s hymen like a ray of sunshine through a window – leaving it unbroken. Another crucial recommendation is that the ice be so cold and hard that it won’t melt, since nothing’s worse than a watery martini. Let me give you my personal recipe, the fruit of long experimentation and guaranteed to produce perfect results. The day before your guests arrive, put all the ingredients – glasses, gin and shaker – in the refrigerator. Use a thermometer to make sure the ice is about twenty degrees below zero (centigrade). Don’t take anything out until your friends arrive; then pour a few drops of Noilly Prat and half a demitasse spoon of Angostura bitters over the ice. Shake it, then pour it out, keeping only the ice, which retains a faint taste of both. Then pour straight gin over the ice, shake it again, and serve. After the dry martini comes one of my own modest inventions, the Buñueloni, best drunk before dinner. It’s really a takeoff on the famous Negroni, but instead of mixing Campari, gin, and sweet Cinzano, I substitute Carpano for the Campari. Here again, the gin – in sufficient quantity to ensure its dominance over the other two ingredients – has excellent effects on the imagination. I’ve no idea how or why; I only know that it works.

Exchange from Whit Stillman’s great film Metropolitan:

CHARLIE: Do you know the French film, “The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie”? When I first heard the title, I thought, “Finally, someone’s going to tell the truth about the bourgeoisie.” What a disappointment! It would be hard to imagine a less fair or accurate portrait.
SALLY: Of course, Buñuel’s a surrealist—despising the bourgeoisie’s part of their credo.
NICK: Where do they get off?
CHARLIE: The truth is, the bourgeoisie does have a lot of charm.
NICK: Of course it does. The surrealists were just a lot of social climbers.

From Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris:

GIL: Oh! Mr. Buñuel! I had a nice idea for a movie for you.
GIL: A group of people attend a very formal dinner party and at the end of dinner when they try to leave the room, they can’t.
BUÑUEL: Why not?
GIL: They just can’t seem to exit the door.
BUÑUEL: But why?
GIL: When they’re forced to stay together the veneer of civilization quickly fades away and what you’re left with is who they really are. Animals.
BUÑUEL: I don’t get it. Why don’t they just walk out of the room?
GIL: All I’m saying is, just think about it. Maybe when you’re shaving one day, it’ll tickle your fancy.
BUÑUEL: But I don’t understand. What’s holding them in the room?

Luis Buñuel, by Man Ray, 1929

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4 Responses to “I should like to make even the most ordinary spectator feel that he is not living in the best of all possible worlds.” – Luis Buñuel

  1. Jessie says:

    Gosh, how much do I love that grab of the bust hanging out in the conversation!

  2. Jeez, Bunuel looks just like Laird Cregar

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