Luis Buñuel’s Viridiana (1961), with Sylvia Pinal, Fernando Rey, Francisco Rabal and Margarita Lozano, will be shown at Film Forum from Friday, April 24, through Thursday, April 30, with show times daily at 1, 2:50, 4:40, 6:30, 8:20 and 10:10. I first saw Viridiana on the last morning and evening of the 1961 Cannes Film Festival, and wrote one of its first rave reviews in the British film magazine Movie. Through this review I was later introduced to Buñuel (1900-1983) by his producer. Buñuel particularly liked my line about his being a man of the left who did not make “boy meets tractor” Soviet-style films. Amazingly, Buñuel made the wondrously sacrilegious Viridiana in Franco’s Spain when the dictator’s censors must have been dozing. After almost half a century, it still retains its brilliance and humanity. Don’t miss it.
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