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The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie
Le Charme discret de la bourgeoisie

Year: 1972
Production Country: France
Directed by Luis Buñuel
Featuring Fernando Rey / Delphine Seyrig / Stéphane Audran / Bulle Ogier / Jean Pierre Cassel / Paul Frankeur
Distributed by STUDIOCANAL
Running time: 101min

Newly restored for its fortieth anniversary, this sly comedy of manners remains one of Luis Buñuel's great achievements. Read more

The screening taking place on wed 11 July 18:10 will now take place in NFT1 and the seating will be unallocated. We apologise for any inconvenience.


Newly restored for its fortieth anniversary, this sly, slippery comedy of bourgeois manners remains one of the finest achievements of Luis Buñuel's dazzlingly creative late period. A compelling string of set-pieces is loosely linked by the comic conceit of six well-to-do friends repeatedly frustrated, in one bizarre way or another, in their attempts to sit down and have a meal together. The film observes, with coolly detached amusement, both the group's insouciance and their absurd concern with conspicuously ‘correct' behaviour in whatever strange situations chance may throw their way. Flitting with disquieting ease between ‘reality' and ‘fantasy', the film – scripted by Buñuel and his long-term partner-in-crime, Jean-Claude Carrière (subject of a tribute season next month) – feels at times like a cautionary parable about the human condition, though the sharp attention to detail ensures that the characters remain vivid and, however perverse, utterly plausible. Discreetly dreamlike, charmingly stylish and quite unrepentantly surreal, it's clearly the work of a master in his wickedly witty prime. – Geoff Andrew


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