By Anna

Don’t try to understand this film because it’s not to be understood from a realistic point of view.

Just take it as a necessary 1929 gross-out precautionary tale that will make you “cooler” in the intellectual circles you run in because you know Salvador Dalí and Luis Buñuel created this in order to put on screen the stuff dreams are made of (well what their dreams are made of).

“Dream logic was always likely to interrupt the realism of his (Buñuel) films. That freedom gave them a quality so distinctive that, like those of Hitchcock and Fellini, they could be identified almost immediately,” says Ebert. This signature of being able to identify a film’s director by the first scene is a quality found in only the greatest of filmmakers.

But all I can really say is I hate watching the man slice the woman’s eye out with a razor (though it’s actually a cow eye) and I hate the near rape scene—in fact I find the entire film quite appalling and not great at all, except for its significance in pushing what is done in front of a camera.

“It is disturbing, frustrating, maddening. It seems without purpose (and yet how much purpose, really, is three in seeing most of the movies we attend?),” says Ebert. His point reinforces the significance of the film, especially for surrealist filmmakers.

I still encourage you to see it if you’ve got a spare 20 minutes and want to be in on the film students’ world of trying to understand why we watch films at all. With that I will end this column on a different note:

Avoiding any soundtracks with songs that were inspired or commissioned for a specific movie (i.e. Twilight, Spiderman, etc…); here is an entirely self-indulgent list of songs whose lyrics are based on and inspired by characters or films. And in fashion with my Ebert pick this week the first goes to Dali:

1. “Debaser”—Pixies

A debaser reduces the value of things or people, and just as the male character of Un Chien Andalou attempts to rape and pillage, the Pixies “want to grow up and be a debaser.” The song is based entirely on the film—check it out.

2. “Carlotta”—Harvey Danger

“Carlotta Valdez I will make you her … I’ll follow anywhere that is until you climb too high, cause I get VERTIGO!”  This song is also entirely about Hitchock’s Vertigo. And it’s great, but better if you’ve seen the film—which shame on you if you haven’t.

3. “Buddy Holly”—Weezer

Classic Weezer song that also mentions Mary Tyler Moore.

4. “Jude Law and a Semester Abroad”—Brand  New

Though not really about Jude Law, it’s about his sexiness and about the fear a guy should have if his girlfriend studies abroad in Great Britain.

5. “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”—Deep Blue Sea

Oh how a film can make you fall in love—and though the book is a far cry from that sentiment, this song is about how Breakfast at Tiffany’s can be the common bond for love.

6. “Clint Eastwood”—Gorillas

Also a song not really about the man, though I think you could read it that way. “I’m happy, I’m feeling glad, I’ve got sunshine in a bag,” all set to creepy circus type sounds/music, which could represent Eastwood’s persona of happy cowboy hero turned solemn cowboy hero with a conscience around 1992.

7. “Clark Gable”—The Postal Service

To take after this great actor’s suave and debonair personality is to be brilliant, and the perspective of The Postal Service is just that.

8. “Ramble On”—Led Zepplin

I’m not saying they implement Lord of the Rings well into this song, but somehow they do it, and minus the goofy lyrics it’s a great Led song. “T’was in the darkest depths of Mordor, I met a girl so fair. But Gollum, and the evil one crept up and slipped away with her, her, her.”

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