The Criminal Life of Archibaldo de la Cruz (1955)

Rated NR 91 minutes

This Mexican-filmed black comedy (distributed in the U.S. seven years after its initial 1955 release date) is one of the minor but no less characteristic works of director Luis Buñuel. The film begins with Archibaldo (Ernesto Alonso) being triggered by a music box into a lengthy reminiscence of his childhood. It was an average, everyday incident, one that undoubtedly has occurred to us all: Archibaldo was caught dressing up in his mother's clothes by his governess, who was then instantly killed by a revolutionary's bullet before she could tell on him. The experience proved to be Archibaldo's first rush, and he spends the rest of his life trying to re-create the sexual euphoria of that moment -- by murdering attractive women. Buñuel's characteristic perverse black humor then adds a twist, which prevents Archibaldo from fulfilling his desires. Perverse, but darkly funny, Ensayo de un Crimen is a slyly shocking delight.~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide

Film Credits

Director: Luis Bunuel

Writer: Luis Buñuel, Eduardo Ugarte and Rodolfo Usigli

Producer: Alfonso Patiño Gómez

Cast: Miroslava Stern, Ernesto Alonso, Rita Macedo, Ariadna Welter, Eva Calvo, Enrique Díaz 'Indiano', Carlos Riquelme, Chabela Durán, Carlos Martínez Baena and Manuel Dondé

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