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Like any great film, Viridiana reveals its depth and detail through multiple viewings. The film is scathingly critical of Catholic hypocrisy and Franco's Spain (Don Jaime's estate is a direct reflection of the country's moribund state of sociopolitical decay), and its allegorical content was not lost on Spanish authorities, who banned the film (it wasn't shown in Spain until 1977) after it won the coveted Palme D'Or at the Cannes Film Festival. In a closing stroke of genius, Buñuel skirted around his censors with a final scene even more provocative (in its subtle implications) than the sexually suggestive ending he'd originally filmed. With much to say about the conflicting nature of human desires, Viridiana may have softened over decades, but it's never lost its ability to spark debate, discussion, and rewarding analysis of Buñuel's directorial vision. --Jeff Shannon
On the DVD
The newly restored, high-definition digital transfer of Viridiana impressively maintains Criterion's exacting standards of audio-visual quality; it's a flawless transfer, with deep blacks and richly detailed clarity. The supplements include new (2006) video interviews with actress Silvia Pinal and Spanish cultural scholar Richard Porton; warmly revealing excerpts from the 1964 French TV series "Cineastes of Our Times," featuring an interview with Buñuel; and a 30-page booklet with an essay on Viridiana by Princeton film scholar Michael Wood, and a generous interview excerpt from the book Objects of Desire: Conversations with Luis Buñuel. --Jeff Shannon
Another great thing in the Viridiana DVD is the wonderful extras they included.
Buñuel demonstrates how Christian charity leads to the creation of false desires which can never be fulfilled, the average man always wanting more.
Technically, Viridiana is a perfect film, odd and enigmatic behind the seeming simplicity.
The 1961 Spanish-Mexican film Viridiana is considered by many to be Luis Buñuel's masterpiece. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Film Buff
A tyrannical husband forbade me to go see this with my fellow Spanish graduate students. I'm so glad to have found it after all these years.Published 7 months ago by Miriam Eldridge
'Viridiana" (1961) is directed by Luis Bunuel (The Phantom of Liberty). The story is about Viridiana who is a young nun about to take her vows, but who reluctantly goes to visit... Read morePublished on September 6, 2012 by G. Edmonson
There are three types of movies abroad in the world: Good movies, Ugly movies, and Bad movies. Good movies are the ones most people think of when they choose their favorites --... Read morePublished on January 1, 2012 by Irish Eyes
Even though Viridiana is very controversial because of its harsh attack against the Catholic Church, the film is very artistic and makes a very good point: "Don't expect that God... Read morePublished on December 26, 2009 by Jaime Sanchez
The nun find no good deed goes unpunished when the beggars
that she is trying to help turn on her and her cousin. Read more
The criticism of intent is a killer on bad films that have no real depth and do not last a few years beyond their intent's purpose. Read morePublished on September 23, 2008 by Cosmoetica
If you have to own only one film from Luis Bunuel, Viridiana have to be it ! I still consider this film from 1961 to be one of the two best the spanish film director ever made. Read morePublished on August 11, 2008 by Daniel Bradette
Perhaps the crowning achievement in Buñuel's oeuvre, "Viridiana" details the efforts of a virtuous former nun to minister to the poor after she's irrevocably changed by a... Read morePublished on July 2, 2007 by John Farr