Un Chien Andalou

  • USA Un Chien Andalou (more)
Short / Experimental / Fantasy / Psychological
France, 1929, 16 min


In a dream-like sequence, a woman's eye is slit open--juxtaposed with a similarly shaped cloud obscuring the moon moving in the same direction as the knife through the eye--to grab the audience's attention. The French phrase "ants in the palms," (which means that someone is "itching" to kill) is shown literally. A man pulls a piano along with the tablets of the Ten Commandments and a dead donkey towards the woman he's itching to kill. A shot of differently striped objects is repeatedly used to connect scenes in this early French short. (official distributor synopsis)


Reviews (5)


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English After twelve years, I got to see Luis Buñuel's iconic surrealist film again, and my feelings about its scenes remained uneasy. On the one hand, Un Chien Andalou is morbid and perverse, on the other – perhaps unintentionally – quite humorous. The sliced eyeball, the animal corpses dragged on the piano, the omnipresent lust and that "stigmatic tingling", it’s as if you are watching some kind of sick dream that scares (and perhaps subconsciously fascinates) you. ()


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English Watching Un Chien Andalou is like looking at a famous exhibit in a dusty museum collection, signed by two equally famous masters. For a movie fan, it is a duty to know them, for a snob to admire them, and for an egoist to claim to have understood them. Surrealism, for me, means Jan Švankmajer, Terry Gilliam, or indeed Luis Buñuel in his later films, such as The Exterminating AngelUn Chien Andalou is an experiment that stood somewhere at the beginning and now has the value of just that dusty museum exhibit, which cannot emotionally engage me, and only the split eye sticks in my memory. I would say it is an experimental film for a small minority of intellectuals. Given the number of reviewers, it seems to be quite widespread. Overall impression: 45%. ()



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English A series of interesting parables that might not be too bad to struggle through; but as a standalone film, completely unusable. ()


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English I like the idea of people going to the movie theater for this, and right in the first scene, they're greeted with a slashed eye. It must have been surreal at the time. It's a pretty powerful experience even today. The film doesn't seem all that incomprehensible to me; rather, I feel it's more of an associative surrealism where what's in the mind appears in reality, and that's when it stops making sense. That’s what makes it beautiful. The scene with the woman who doesn't succumb to the man's desire is excellent proof of that. An incredibly daring film for its time, and I'm glad it didn't remain forgotten or lost somewhere. ()


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English I can stomach almost all exotic and extinct genre varieties of cinema, but fuck this one. Surrealism should have stayed in painting and, at most, in literature, which nobody reads nowadays anyway, but not in film, where it has absolutely nothing to say except a bunch of question marks. I came and saw a film that can’t be understood... so I didn't really lose. ()

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