Un Chien Andalou (An Andalusian Dog) is the grisly and surreal first film from Spanish director Luis Bunuel. Bunuel collaborated with artist Salvador Dali on the short film that was inspired by two of their dreams – Bunuel had dreamed of a cloud blowing across the moon and Dali of hand covered with ants. Both of these images play a key part in this surrealist picture that is without clear logic or a coherent plot.
Full of gruesome images, including an eye being sliced open with a razor, a severed hand and rotting donkey carcasses along with scenes of a sexual nature, Un Chien Andalou is likely to make a disturbing watch even for modern audiences. Bunuel allegedly attended the first screening with rocks in his pockets to defend himself against an angry audience, but the film was well received and ran for eight months.
The surreal nature of Un Chien Andalou leaves it open to many different interpretations and a profusion of analyses can be found online. Slant magazine has put together a fascinating article on the film that acts as a good starting point for anyone interested in reading more and Roger Ebert’s feature on the movie is also worth a look.
You can watch the full sixteen minutes of Un Chien Andalou on YouTube below. I’m very interested to know what you all think of this film and what you read into it, so have a look and leave me a comment or two…