Screened as part of NZIFF 2006
Luis Buñuel’s violent drama of life without love in the slums of Mexico City has lost none of its shocking power. Fifty-six years after outraged Mexicans called for the director’s blood, this beautiful new print comes to us from Mexico’s UNAM film archive.
“A great, great movie... This low-budget account of Mexico City street kids, inspired by actual cases as well as [the Spanish] Buñuel’s impressions of his new country, is a masterpiece of social surrealism and the founding work of third-world barrio horror [think City of God]. Los Olvidados (The Forgotten Ones) is strong enough to make a hardened Communist cry or drive a (true) Christian to despair. The title is in part ironic: once seen, this movie can never be forgotten. In no way ‘ennobled’ by their struggle to survive, Buñuel’s children are predators who band together to rob the crippled and the blind. Los Olvidados is set in a world where one child is abandoned by his father and another has to steal food from his mother. The weak prey on the weaker, dogs dress as people, and people die like dogs.” — J. Hoberman, Village Voice