Dali’s Surrealist Visions In Free Game The Tender Cut

Why no why

Have you seen Salvador Dalí and director Luis Buñuel’s surrealist film Un Chien Andalou? You might know it as “that weird film where a load of seemingly unconnected things happen oh yeah and that dude slices that woman’s eye open with a razor right?” This is relevant: The Tender Cut [official site] is a free short game inspired by that film. I think you might enjoy its moodiness, unsettling with odd visions and bloody holes and genital hallucinations and razor-sharpening.

The Tender Cut visits the small apartment from the film’s opening scene, a stark place with a balcony and a few objects to jab at. Say, why are insects emerging from behind that painting? Why does it make me choose a distinctly geniticular image at the start? Why is sharpening this razor so hypnotic? Oh no why did I jab that squishy hole? Oh god why is the Moon doing that?

It’s all very dreamy, drawn in quiet monochrome with a soundtrack similar in tone to the film’s. Explore, poke at stuff, and see what happens. At the end, it’ll show you which scenes you found and missed, and I was certainly surprised on my first play by how much I hadn’t found.

The Tender Cut is the work of a Russian team calling themselves ‘No, thanks’, which is both difficult for our comma-divided tagging system and for me trying to convey the name of the studio without looking like I’m talking to myself, politely declining an unheard request.

You can download The Tender Cut free for Windows and Mac from its site or Itch or other places.

One project I've never got around to: cataloguing first-person smoking in games.


  1. Spacewalk says:

    Eyes to see this getting a wreyetup.

  2. Anthile says:

    Star(r)ing eye tag?

  3. teije says:

    I’m still recovering from seeing Un Chien Andalou 25 years ago when on substances not conducive to the experience. No, thanks.

  4. Jalan says:

    A “you might know it as…” line that neglects to mention its reference in a Pixies song.

  5. April March says:

    I’ve often wondered what video games the surrealist movement would create. It’s a given that they would create video games if they existed at the time (they created movies because it was the latest, strangest new media) but I wonder if a true surrealist game can even be exist. You can be made to tag along a linear media that makes no sense, but how can you meaningfully advance through a game that makes no sense?

    Anyway I didn’t like the game much because it seems to simplify the movie to a few moments while making too much overall sense and also my cigarrette disappeared after I cut the moon. 2 out of 7

  6. wu wei says:

    Oh man, I’ve had a serious problem with the injury to eye motif ever since I threw up in a high school English class after watching poor old Rumpole have his eyes torn out in a production of King Lear. And then again during Takashi Miike’s Audition, although I think it was more the popping sound of the acupuncture needles as they slid into the eyeball rather than the visual…

    • Jalan says:

      There’s a bizarre fetish relationship with films and eye injuries (or the lead-up to a possible eye injury). I think someone even made some kind of megaclip-style video montage of a lot of them not too long ago but I’ll be damned if I remember where I last saw it linked.

  7. Amirimer says:

    LOVE this game! Probably the most bizarre game I played! Good Work!

    Did a short gameplay video! Enjoy!