What is COLOSSAL's surrealism? For me it is too early to say, there's work to be done. There are many factors, even down to its spatial organization that could bring one to call it surrealist. It's also a matter of decoupage. Certainly it is a "hallucination that is also a fact" (Bazin). In the films long recollections where the past and present seem to shift in mid-sentence or in the grand pauses that take up whole chunks of the encounters, there is a dream-like tone and each scene begins (and sometimes even ends) with an "out-of-order" chink for the penny-slot of meaning. But this quality is not the sole domain of Ventura's consciousness, as singular as he is. He and Costa and the cumulative effect of everyone encountered are much more generous. "In this world's structure, dream loosens individuality like a bad tooth" (Walter Benjamin, "Surrealism" 1929).
There is something else underlying Ventura's encounters with the people of Fountainhas and it's something he carries with him wherever he goes. It's something white walls and new monstrosities can't erase.There may be some indication of what Ventura is carrying in John Ford's GRAPES OF WRATH, two films with many affinities.