cover image Objects of Desire

Objects of Desire

Rizzoli, Raymond Durgnat, Jose De La Colina. Rizzoli International Publications, $24 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-941419-68-0

Only serious cineastes will seek out this collection of conversations with Luis Bunuel (1900-1983), but their efforts will be amply repaid with a wealth of information about the Spanish filmmaker's techniques. Mexican film scholars de la Colina and Perez Turrent spent some 50 hours interviewing Bunuel; here they supply transcripts in which his quicksilver wit fairly gleams. Meanwhile de la Colina and Perez Turrent, so earnest and so eager to cite their colleagues that they seem almost to parody their profession, serve as foils. Offering interpretations of Bunuel's work (for example, his decision to cast two actresses in a single role in That Obscure Object of Desire ), they are met with Bunuel's good-natured but staunchly surrealist dismissals. They elicit memorable anecdotes, whose subjects include Salvador and Gala Dali, Louis Aragon and other luminaries of surrealism. However, Bunuel himself refashioned most of these same stories in his 1982 autobiography My Last Sigh ; because of its broader focus and more provocative structure, that volume remains the book of choice for generalists. (Jan.)