Tristana - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Tristana Reviews

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March 5, 2017
The film makes important points about conventions, but it was a bit dry.
February 23, 2017
The greatest filmmakers are a step ahead of the rest, they are aware of the associations an audience will have with the most minute detail. They are sensitive to these details and do not overlook them. When I saw Bunuel's El Bruto, I was not confident his mind worked this way. But Tristana proved a different experience entirely, nothing about it felt like the same filmmaker. In fact, thus far in my experience with Bunuel, he's the only auteur I can't identify through the three films I've seen, those two plus Andalusian Dog. They are so various in their entire approach - content, photography, editing, all around form - that nothing thus far makes me go: Bunuel.

Tristana's beauty is the first instance of association we make in our mind. We see her, we see the old man Lope, already we wonder if he will make advances on her. He will, however disturbing the idea may be given he's her guardian.

Poor Saturno thinks that now because he and Tristana are both handicapped, he has a better shot with her. His advances fail. Can't he just get a peak? What's next for him - will he go on living? As soon as he bends down to pick up that rock, my mind automatically assumes he'll be persistent in his advance and ask her to flash him. She does so, backing him into the garden where he presumably masturbates to the image. I was hoping more would be made of this relationship, but it suggests she is carefree of the consequences to anything. However, she's already been here, so it's nothing new. It is a statement that she has no loyalty to Lope, even if he took her in sick.

There's a great shot of Saturno wheeling Tristana through a courtyard past a baby carriage while she's eating a cone - she recognizes the association, that some part of her is lapping the luxury of being a big baby now.

This film is somewhat an exercise in cruelty, that the love in a man's heart is superficial. When Tristana becomes sick, her new lover, the artist Horatio, brings her back to Lope for care. Lope accepts and wants Horatio kept away, but when he finds out she has to amputate her leg, he tries bringing Horatio back into the picture. This scenario fails, Horatio checking his watch, anticipating his visitation time being up as she tries to entertain him with a piano suite. She senses he doesn't love her, and pushes him away. Now she's all to Lope, who still wants to be with her, but who she does not feel anything for besides what she knows she can use him for.

The end is confusing. I can't say exactly for sure what we're looking at. The dream of Lope's swinging bell-rung head recurs, mixed in with other replaying images from the film, and finally back where we started, the field where they arrived with Saturno, but instead of entering, they're exiting.
July 13, 2016
Not interested due to its claustrophobic world of perverted desire and manipulation.
½ February 28, 2016
Aunque solo sean pesadillas, son buenos los sue˝os. Los muertos no sue˝an.
January 26, 2016
When this film was released in 1970 Spain was still under the regime of Franco however its cinema was definitely epic as this film proves.
In a nutshell the film follows the story of a young Spanish girl Tristana (Catherine Deneve) who we discover at the start has been adopted by her recently deceased mother's friend Don Lope (Fernando Rey).
What begins as an apparent adopted father/daughter relationship we discover turns into a more sexual nature although this is not shown on screen.
Tristana begins the film as a timid virgin.
Don Lope is a typical miserable socialist who would rather live with the minimum of material possessions to fund a workshy lifestyle.
As the film develops Tristana breaks free from the hold of Lope and flees with lover Horacio (Franco Nero who some may recognise from Django and Django Unchained).
However Tristan develops a setios illness and for some reason moves back in with Lope even taking the vow of marriage.
She has her ill leg amputated and develops a sinister streak redulting in her inaction when Lope is dying.
What begins the film as a timid young girl is now a confident/vengeful woman.
Director Luis Bu├▒uel tells a good story of revenge in a world cinema (Spanish) setting.
The film does not have the pacing of your average Hollywood release and this will probably put many off but it is a good story told by Bu├▒uel.
September 12, 2015
Tristana is yet another Bunuel-sized assault on Catholicism and aristocracy told through the cynical, pragmatic and ultimately sullen eyes of Catherine Deneuve's Tristana. Think of it as a companion piece to Viridiana only more embittered than inflamed.
March 29, 2015
bunuel+deneuve=good pic
Super Reviewer
January 31, 2015
The dubbing of Deneuve's voice into Spanish seems to diminish the impact of her performance, but sill this a fascinating story of power, hypocrisy, resentment and bitterness as seen through the eyes of two complex characters in a society dominated by religious and patriarchal values.
January 20, 2015
Historia sobre la falsa moral de la sociedad dirigida por el maestro Luis Bu˝uel.
½ September 17, 2014
Brilliant. My only criticism is the dubbing. But, this was the style of that time. Deneuve is perfect even without her voice.
July 28, 2014
A later Bunuel film that's a bit more uneven than his master-strokes, but it's strong thematic material, restrained surrealism and a deservedly ominous ending amount to make Tristana a very potent art house release for the 70s
July 26, 2014
This movie is a masterfully shot, emotionally resonating experience. I cared about each character, including the controversial Don. The featured streets of Spain are a fitting environment for Tristana, as her life, although young, is lonely and drab. The religious criticism was wisely subtle, as although we understand the practical, atheistic views of Lope (which the director likely shares), he has enormous faults of his own, and therefore his character does nothing to glorify atheism.

This is the first I've seen of this director, and I am determined to explore more of his work.
May 7, 2014
Not one of Bu˝uel's best but the talent involved and the ideas at play definitely make this a film worth watching.
April 5, 2014
Nominated for an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film, Tristana was a film that came late in Luis Bu˝uel's career, but it's still one of his finest. The man was no slouch when it came to his approach of male and female relationships in his films. His examinations of this dynamic were often left open to interpretation, but in this case, he seems to leave a little more on the table, rather than under it. Catherine Deneuve's character goes through an enormous change, and even though her motivations are not quite clear, we're on the same page as her at all times. Fernando Rey's character isn't necessarily a bad man, but he is questionable at times. Quite often you feel sympathy towards him, rather unexpectedly. But you also feel sympathy towards Deneuve, yet you almost feel disgust towards her in the latter half of the film. It's an interesting arc for a character. Unsurprisingly, this film has been previously voted as one of the best Spanish films ever made. And with so many classic films under Bu˝uel's belt, that's saying a lot.
January 30, 2014
A tale of interchanging sexual power
½ January 3, 2014
Sex, death, and money. An old, aristocratic libertine vs. a repressed/oppressed, innocent, beautiful young woman. The former corrupts the latter, and the latter makes a fool of the former. And then he inherits a fortune, and she gets a leg amputated, and they get married! Clearly, a society that deserves to be overthrown by revolution!
½ June 4, 2013
the dead don't dream...
Super Reviewer
May 22, 2013
An old man (Fernando Rey) becomes obsessed with an beautiful orphan girl (Catherine Denueve) whom he adopts; she leaves him but returns when she loses her leg. All of Luis Bunuel's usual intelligence and obsessiveness is on display here, but there's little passion or magic in this melodrama that's only slightly twisted. TRISTANA serves as a breather between the masterpieces BELLE DE JOUR and DISCREET CHARM OF THE BOURGEOISIE.
April 5, 2013
Bu˝uel, one of the all time great directors, constructs a picture of haunting qualities about human capriciousness, sadomasochism, and of course, anticlericalism...In the hands of any other director, this would have been lurid melodrama...
½ January 11, 2013
Why did this movie get 100%? I don't get it.
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