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This film is among our 2008 Top 100 nominees and has been before, but I can't find a separate discussion thread. SDG has reviewed it, and links to his review here, but there must be some fans out there.

I'd like to see a little more discussion of the film, which is screening as part of this year's Virginia Film Festival. I'm not sure this one film alone is worth the trip, but I like the idea of seeing it with a group and having a brief post-screening discussion, rather than tracking down a DVD of the film (assuming one is available) and watching it on my own.

I haven't seen much Bunuel and am not sure how I'd respond to this film, but if anyone wants to take a stance that differs markedly from SDG's I'd love to read it. And if SDG has more to say about the film, he's encourage to contribute as well.

Edited by Christian

"What matters are movies, not awards; experiences, not celebrations; the subjective power of individual critical points of view, not the declamatory compromises of consensus." - Richard Brody, "Godard's Surprise Win Is a Victory for Independent Cinema," The New Yorker

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Christian,

Definitely see it if you get the chance. IMO, one of the best examinations of faith on film there is. Right up there with Winter Light, if you found that a provocative take on faith. But, Bunuel seems to carry his agnosticism even further. As if it's possible to go further than Bergman where that's concerned. But, he took his skepticism most seriously, and tried to treat his subjects with fairness. His entire career was spent grappling with the divine. And for certain, he had strong contentions with the almighty, and a bit of an axe to grind, and he left no stone unturned. Yet, IMO, with Nazarin, he somehow manages to find that fine line that forces the honest man to take a good hard look at how effectual the man of faith's faith truly is. Which brings up a whole lot of theological worms for fodder. So, do see it. I'd love to discuss in more detail. But know, Bunuel is definitely not everyone's cup of tea, to say the least. It may just strike you the absolute wrong way. But, it is one of those films I don't think I could recommend highly enough. Especially in a forum on Arts and Faith. It takes a look at the tough questions.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks, Weiderspahn. It looks like this is on. I've got the day off from work. I just need to allot the correct amount of driving time to make the show. Actually, this is the second show I'll be seeing. It's the first that might be sacrificed if I encounter bad traffic.

Any recommended Bunuel film for me to check out before heading down? I've seen Un Chien Andalou and, I just now realize, I think I gave Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie a whirl a couple of years ago but didn't get through it.

Edited by Christian

"What matters are movies, not awards; experiences, not celebrations; the subjective power of individual critical points of view, not the declamatory compromises of consensus." - Richard Brody, "Godard's Surprise Win Is a Victory for Independent Cinema," The New Yorker

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Any recommended Bunuel film for me to check out before heading down? I've seen Un Chien Andalou and, I just now realize, I think I gave Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie a whirl a couple of years ago but didn't get through it.

The Milky Way has pretty similar themes. Discreet Charms and Exterminating Angel are probably his most accessible films, but even these require a lot of patience at times. I am hoping to get a copy of Nazarin by the time you catch this screening, as it has been a while.

"...the vivid crossing of borders between film and theology may save the film from the banality of cinema and festival business, and it may also save the church from the deep sleep of the habitual and the always known."

(Hans Werner Dannowski)

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  • 2 weeks later...
An update on my plans.

"What matters are movies, not awards; experiences, not celebrations; the subjective power of individual critical points of view, not the declamatory compromises of consensus." - Richard Brody, "Godard's Surprise Win Is a Victory for Independent Cinema," The New Yorker

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Bummer, better luck next time. FWIW I rewatched the film in anticipation of your opportunity to see it, turns out I forgot how good it is.

Edited by MLeary

"...the vivid crossing of borders between film and theology may save the film from the banality of cinema and festival business, and it may also save the church from the deep sleep of the habitual and the always known."

(Hans Werner Dannowski)

Filmwell | Twitter

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Bummer, better luck next time. FWIW I rewatched the film in anticipation of your opportunity to see it, turns out I forgot how good it is.

I could do a little Googling, but let me just ask: What's the best video version? Are you still overseas -- watching something other than a Region 1 DVD?

"What matters are movies, not awards; experiences, not celebrations; the subjective power of individual critical points of view, not the declamatory compromises of consensus." - Richard Brody, "Godard's Surprise Win Is a Victory for Independent Cinema," The New Yorker

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  • 3 weeks later...

This is the only DVD I am aware of, in several region editions.

And apparently I disagree with SDG on this one a bit, as I think the film is ultimately more negative. Some take the ending as positive, some as cynical, I think it is worse than either of these.

"...the vivid crossing of borders between film and theology may save the film from the banality of cinema and festival business, and it may also save the church from the deep sleep of the habitual and the always known."

(Hans Werner Dannowski)

Filmwell | Twitter

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Ah good, I read you incorrectly. I can't remember what specifically happens at the end of The Power and the Glory, but I like the way you use it as a foil.

"...the vivid crossing of borders between film and theology may save the film from the banality of cinema and festival business, and it may also save the church from the deep sleep of the habitual and the always known."

(Hans Werner Dannowski)

Filmwell | Twitter

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