Tras Nazarín (Following Nazarín). 2015. Spain/Mexico. Directed by Javier Espada. Screenplay by Espada, Alberto Andrés Lacasta. DCP. In Spanish; English subtitles. 75 min.
Much more than the standard “making-of” documentary, Javier Espada’s 2015 Tras Nazarín (Following Nazarín) locates Luis Buñuel’s 1959 Nazarín within the Mexican landscape, using still photos taken by Buñuel and the great Mexican photographer Manuel Álvarez Bravo (the subject of a MoMA retrospective in 2014) to link the images of the film to the countryside as it was at the time of the shoot and as it is today. Interviews with Buñuel’s collaborators, among them the screenwriter Jean Claude Carrière and the actors Ignacio López Tarso and Silvia Pinal, evoke Buñuel’s methods; reflections from filmmakers (including Arturo Ripstein and Carlos Reygadas), critics, and scholars position this eternally audacious work in the context of Spanish Catholicism and Mexican history.