Luis Buñuel

The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie

The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie

In Luis Buñuel’s deliciously satiric masterpiece, an upper-class sextet sits down to a dinner that is continually delayed, their attempts to eat thwarted by vaudevillian events both actual and imagined, including terrorist attacks, military maneuvers, and ghostly apparitions. Stringing together a discontinuous, digressive series of absurdist set pieces, Buñuel and his screenwriting partner Jean-Claude Carrière send a cast of European-film greats—including Fernando Rey, Stéphane Audran, Delphine Seyrig, and Jean-Pierre Cassel—through a maze of desire deferred, frustrated, and interrupted. The Oscar-winning pinnacle of Buñuel’s late-career ascent as a feted maestro of the international art house, The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie is also one of his most gleefully radical assaults on the values of the ruling class.

Film Info

  • Luis Buñuel
  • France
  • 1972
  • 101 minutes
  • Color
  • 1.66:1
  • French
  • Spine #102

Available In

Collector's Set

Three Films by Luis Buñuel

Three Films by Luis Buñuel

Blu-Ray Box Set

3 Discs

$79.96

The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie
Cast
Fernando Rey
Rafael Acosta, the ambassador
Jean-Pierre Cassel
Henri Sénéchal
Paul Frankeur
François Thévenot
Delphine Seyrig
Simone Thévenot
Stéphane Audran
Alice Sénéchal
Bulle Ogier
Florence, her sister
Michel Piccoli
The minister
Julien Bertheau
Monsignor Dufour
Milena Vukotic
Inès, the maid
Maria Gabriella Maione
The guerilla
Claude Piéplu
The colonel
Muni
The peasant woman
Pierre Maguelon
The bloody sergeant
Credits
Director
Luis Buñuel
Screenplay
Luis Buñuel
Screenplay
Jean-Claude Carrière
Producer
Serge Silberman
Cinematography
Edmond Richard
Art director
Pierre Guffroy
Editing
Hélène Plemiannikov
Sound
Guy Villette
Sound effects
Luis Buñuel
Makeup
Odette Berroyer
Makeup
Fernande Hugi
Costumes
Jacqueline Guyot

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Explore

Jean-Claude Carrière

Writer

Jean-Claude Carrière
Jean-Claude Carrière

A quietly influential force in art cinema throughout the second half of the twentieth century and beyond, screenwriter Jean-Claude Carrière (also an author, actor, opera librettist, and occasional director) has collaborated with such important screen artists as Luis Buñuel, Milos Forman, Jean-Luc Godard, Philip Kaufman, Louis Malle, Nagisa Oshima, Volker Schlöndorff, and Andrzej Wajda. He got his start working with the comic filmmaker Pierre Etaix on the Oscar-winning slapstick short Happy Anniversary (1962), which the two codirected; Carrière would go on to cowrite all of Etaix’s 1960s features. Meanwhile, Buñuel enlisted Carrière to cowrite 1964’s Diary of a Chambermaid, the beginning of a grand partnership that would also result in increasingly surreal visions like Belle de jour (1967), The Milky Way (1969), The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie (1972), The Phantom of Liberty (1974), and That Obscure Object of Desire (1977). (In 2012, Carrière said of working with Buñuel, “How we mixed together is impossible to say. One started an idea, the other finished it.”) As is clear from those productions, he has a way with the absurd, but the versatile and erudite Carrière is also a keen literary adapter, translating such daunting novels as The Tin Drum and The Unbearable Lightness of Being into formidable films. Carrière’s career continues to take surprising turns: he has a small but crucial role in Abbas Kiarostami’s 2010 Certified Copy, for example.