Sunday, January 15, 2012

The Young One - Luis Buñuel

A lot of things have been written about The Young One, the second and last movie filmed by Buñuel in English. Check, for instance this website (in Spanish), this one, this one, and obviously the reviews written by the users of IMDb. Most of the comments agree that this is a great movie for a number of reasons: it portrays racism in the United States as a social construction rather than a good vs. bad issue; it shows how religion is practically irrelevant whenever man is in the state of nature; it shows a sarcastic view of religion; from a plot perspective, The Young One offers the opportunity to all its characters to be the main actor and the most powerful person at least once; at the end of the movie, it is extremely hard to say who was the main character. Also, the fact that the movie has no music other than the sounds of nature increases dramatism exponentially.

What I haven't read so far is an appreciation of the extent to which Evie, the 13 year-old girl is used as a piece of exchange by the male characters of the movie. Traver uses her to get free; the priest buys her from Miller in order to have one more soul for God's cause, and Miller sells her (or more accurately, she rents her) to buy the silence of the priest for raping the girl.

The Young One is an extremely rich and complex movie, and you can watch it for free here:

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