Robinson Crusoe

Director: Luis Buñuel
Year Released: 1954
Rating: 3.0

Economical curiosity in the Buñuel oeuvre that would be easy to dismiss as a contract job if there wasn't a fair amount of craft apparent on screen. Knowing of Buñuel's strong distaste for religion makes the scenes where Crusoe celebrates the Sabbath and teaches slave Friday about 'the good book' is sure to make those familiar with the director's views roll their eyes far, far into the back of their heads (not to mention Buñuel's awareness of and probable disgust with English colonialism). Still, despite the level of sarcasm that can be read into this, it still functions as a fine adaptation of the novel, with Dan O'Herlihy acting as a confident Master to Jaime Fernández's 're-educated' Slave, although modern audiences aware of survivalists like Tom Brown and Bear Grylls will need to suspend disbelief: you mean Crusoe can build a fortress for himself and make chairs and tables and yet he can't build himself a boat to get the hell out of there? By day four I'd be tying ropes to giant sea turtles to get away.