Antonio das Mortes

Director: Glauber Rocha
Year Released: 1969
Rating: 3.5

The notorious Antonio das Mortes is commissioned to kill a revolutionary, but he soon discovers that this so-called 'rebel' is actually a defender of the people against oppressive (Capitalistic?) forces. This is far more expressive and theatrical than intellectual or politically probing, an amalgamation of Jancsó, Paradjanov and Leone into an oddly entrancing and vibrant film. The construction is highly unorthodox: it has an air of 'primitiveness' about it even though the characters are surrounded by modern elements (paved roads, vehicles, gas stations) and the constant tribal chanting and (sometimes) inexplicable transitions seek to produce dis-ease in the viewer. Saying "they don't make them like this anymore" may be a cliché, but here's another case where that is precisely the case.