Sunday, February 19, 2012

Luis Buñuel: El bruto

In Luis Buñuel's El bruto / The Brute (1953), naked class warfare provides the milieu, making it as timely as ever. Slumlord Don Andrés Cabrera (Andrés Soler) wants to clear out dozens of poor tenants from a ramshackle property. Why? So he can tear it down, sell off the land and build a new country house for himself, his fiery trophy wife Paloma (Katy Paloma) and his mischievous father Don Pepe (Paco Martínez). The tenants are instantly riled up, despite knowing who holds the cards: "The law is for the rich. We don't stand a chance."  Still, they decide to resist eviction. You can compare this with the bulldozer scene in John Ford's The Grapes of Wrath (1940).

But in El bruto, Don Andrés quips to Paloma, "I wish I had the power to exterminate that bunch of revolutionaries."  Paloma suggests taking out the four "ringleaders," clipping the tops off flowers to illustrate her point. Enter Pedro (Pedro Armendáriz), el bruto, followed by dangerous liaisons (including with Paloma) and general mayhem.   

Don Pepe: "If you don't fend for yourself, you won't get anything."

Today's Rune: Signals. 


Charles Gramlich said...

That top image is very sensual.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Your blog always reminds me how many movies I have not seen.