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Black God, White Devil 12 rating

Wanted for killing his boss, Manuel and his wife flee to a primordial violent region in Glauber Rocha's masterpiece and banner film of Brazil's Cinema Novo movement.

Drama 1964 119 mins

Director: Glauber Rocha



Wanted for killing his boss, Manuel (Geraldo del Rey) flees with his wife Rosa (Yoná Magalhães) to the sertão, a barren landscape of Northern Brazil. Thrust into a primordial violent region, Manuel and Rosa come under the influence of a series of frightening figures. Sebastiao, a fanatic preacher who promises utopia but practices massacre, and a band of bandits called Cangaceiros led by Corisco. Shuttled between the “Black God” and “White Devil”, Manuel and Rosa’s struggle for survival escalates when Church authorities hire a hitman named Antonio das Mortes to hunt down every combatant in the region.

In addition to writing and directing the film, Rocha wrote the folk songs scored by Heitor Villa-Lobos and Sergio Ricardo. Black God White Devil became the banner film of Brazil’s Cinema Novo movement. Its artistic achievement, acknowledged by Luis Buñuel and Bernardo Bertolucci, has made it a seminal classic of film history.