Aguirre: The Wrath of God (1972)
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Klaus Kinski, Ruy Guerra. Werner Herzog directed this surreal tale of a mad, power-hungry 16th-century conquistador who leads a doomed expedition through Spain in search of a lost city of gold. 1973/color/94 min/NR/German/subtitled.
Quite simply a great movie, one whose implacable portrait of ruthless greed and insane ambition becomes more pertinent every year. The astonishing Klaus Kinski plays Don Lope de Aguirre, a brutal conquistador who leads his soldiers into the Amazon jungle in an obsessive quest for gold. The story is of the expedition's relentless degeneration into brutality and despair, but the movie is much more than its plot. Director Werner Herzog strove, whenever possible, to replicate the historical circumstances of the conquistadors, and the sheer human effort of traveling through the dense mountains and valleys of Brazil in armor creates a palpable sense of struggle and derangement. This sense of reality, combined with Kinski's intensely furious performance, makes Aguirre, the Wrath of God a riveting film. Its unique emotional power is matched only by other Herzog-Kinski collaborations like Fitzcarraldo and Woyzek. --Bret Fetzer
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Top customer reviews
For here is a FILM!
Brilliant in conception, cinematography, casting, acting, and directing; "Aguirre the Wrath of God" overwhelms all other efforts in the "action-adventure" genre
(except of course, Herzog's other Amazonian masterpiece "Fitzcarraldo") because it is all REAL!
Imagine going on a SERIOUS whitewater rafting trip in the Amazon jungle
dressed in full Spanish armor and period costumes with a cannon on rickety log rafts.
They actually DID IT!
They had a great adventure, all of them, the actors and the native extras and everybody.
And they filmed it and they got THIS,
this masterwork, this gem.
"Aguirre the Wrath of God" is a tour de force of artistic brilliance and personal courage.
It is a film that once viewed will haunt your dreams and days for a lifetime.
OK so it's in German with English subtitles. But the subtitles are clear and yellow and well-placed at the bottom of the screeen so as to never obscure the action or dialog.
And the action and dialog are so gripping that you will soon forget you are even watching a German-language film.
The DVD has a nice, clean picture, with just a tad bit of grain. There are two German language soundtracks with English subtitles: one in 5.1 Surround and one in Dolby Stereo. There is also an English speaking soundtrack in Dolby as well.
Kinski is fabulous here! If you're a Klaus Kinski fan, this is the arch-typical performance that you've got to own of his. This is the best, most furious, most derranged role of Kinski's career and he is perfect in the role! There probably has never been a madder, more insanely-driven autocrat portrayed on film as this.
This isn't a film you should just see once - this is a film everyone should OWN and watch repeatedly! It's one of the best, most original movies of the past thirty years; a strange and bizarre mirage of haunting images and twisted happenings; a true masterpiece in every sense of the word! I highly recommed this movie!
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