Virtual CinéSalon
Belle de Jour

Pick of the Week: Tuesday, October 13–Monday, October 19, 2020
Available on The Criterion Channel

Dir. Luis Buñuel, 1967, 120 min
With Michel Piccoli, Catherine Deneuve, Françoise Dorléac, Jacques Perrin
In French with English subtitles

Behind Catherine Deneuve’s porcelain perfection hides a cracked interior in one of the actress’s most iconic roles: Séverine, a Paris housewife who secretly begins spending her after­noons working in a bordello.

This surreal and erotic late-sixties daydream, from provocateur for the ages Luis Buñuel, is an examination of desire and fetishistic pleasure—both for its characters’ and viewers’—as well as a gently absurdist take on contemporary social mores and class divisions. Fantasy and reality commingle in this burst of cinematic transgression, which remains one of Buñuel’s biggest hits.

“Buñuel’s handling of color is gorgeous. And the acting is impeccable. Miss Deneuve has a rare, cool elegance which suggests far more fire than it reveals.” – The Los Angeles Times

“A strange, and captivating film.” – The Guardian