Luis Buñuel

The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie

The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie

In Luis Buñuel’s deliciously satiric masterpiece, an upper-middle-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, Jean-Pierre Cassel, and Bulle Ogier—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

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

Blu-ray Special Edition Features

  • New high-definition digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack
  • The Castaway of Providence Street, a 1971 homage to Luis Buñuel made by his longtime friends and fellow filmmakers Arturo Ripstein and Rafael Castanedo
  • Speaking of Buñuel, a documentary from 2000 on Buñuel’s life and work by José Luis López-Linares and Javier Rioyo
  • Once Upon a Time: “The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie,” a 2011 television program about the making of the film
  • Episode of the French television program Pour le cinéma from 1972 that features behind-the-scenes footage of Buñuel on set, along with interviews with the director and with actors Stéphane Audran, Jean-Pierre Cassel, Bulle Ogier, Fernando Rey, and Delphine Seyrig
  • Trailer
  • New English subtitle translation

Available In

Collector's Set

Three Films by Luis Buñuel

Three Films by Luis Buñuel

Blu-ray Box Set

3 Discs

$79.96

Special Features

  • New high-definition digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack
  • The Castaway of Providence Street, a 1971 homage to Luis Buñuel made by his longtime friends and fellow filmmakers Arturo Ripstein and Rafael Castanedo
  • Speaking of Buñuel, a documentary from 2000 on Buñuel’s life and work by José Luis López-Linares and Javier Rioyo
  • Once Upon a Time: “The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie,” a 2011 television program about the making of the film
  • Episode of the French television program Pour le cinéma from 1972 that features behind-the-scenes footage of Buñuel on set, along with interviews with the director and with actors Stéphane Audran, Jean-Pierre Cassel, Bulle Ogier, Fernando Rey, and Delphine Seyrig
  • Trailer
  • New English subtitle translation
The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie
Cast
Fernando Rey
Rafael Acosta, the ambassador
Paul Frankeur
François Thévenot
Delphine Seyrig
Simone Thévenot
Bulle Ogier
Florence, her sister
Stéphane Audran
Alice Sénéchal
Jean-Pierre Cassel
Henri Sénéchal
Julien Bertheau
Monsignor Dufour
Milena Vukotic
Inès, the maid
Maria Gabriella Maione
Guerrilla
Claude Piéplu
Colonel
Muni
Peasant woman
Pierre Maguelon
Bloody sergeant
François Maistre
Police inspector
Michel Piccoli
Minister
Credits
Director
Luis Buñuel
Screenplay
Luis Buñuel
Screenplay
Jean-Claude Carrière
Editor
Hélène Plemiannikov
Production design
Pierre Guffroy
Director of photography
Edmond Richard
Production manager
Ully Pickard
Producer
Serge Silberman
Sound
Guy Villette
Sound effects
Luis Buñuel
Makeup
Odette Berroyer
Makeup
Fernande Hugi
Costumes
Jacqueline Guyot

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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.