Aguirre, the Wrath of God

Aguirre, the Wrath of God

Director: Werner Herzog Cast: Klaus Kinski, Cecilia Rivera, Ruy Guerra

Blu-ray (Wide Screen)

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Overview

Aguirre, the Wrath of God

The most famed and well-regarded collaboration between New German Cinema director Werner Herzog and his frequent leading man, Klaus Kinski, this epic historical drama was legendary for the arduousness of its on-location filming and the convincing zealous obsession employed by Kinski in playing the title role. Exhausted and near to admitting failure in its quest for riches, the 1650-51 expedition of Spanish conquistador Gonzalo Pizarro (Alejandro Repulles) bogs down in the impenetrable jungles of Peru. As a last-ditch effort to locate treasure, Pizarro orders a party to scout ahead for signs of El Dorado, the fabled seven cities of gold. In command are a trio of nobles, Pedro de Ursua (Ruy Guerra), Fernando de Guzman (Peter Berling), and Lope de Aguirre (Kinski). Traveling by river raft, the explorers are besieged by hostile natives, disease, starvation and treacherous waters. Crazed with greed and mad with power, Aguirre takes over the enterprise, slaughtering any that oppose him. Nature and Aguirre's own unquenchable thirst for glory ultimately render him insane, in charge of nothing but a raft of corpses and chattering monkeys. Aguirre, der Zorn Gottes (1973) was based on the real-life journals of a priest, Brother Gaspar de Carvajal (played in the film by Del Negro), who accompanied Pizarro on his ill-fated mission.

Product Details

Release Date: 03/17/2015
UPC: 0826663156843
Original Release: 1972
Source: Shout Factory
Region Code: A
Presentation: [Wide Screen]
Time: 1:34:00
Sales rank: 19,901

Special Features

Audio commentary with Writer/Producer/Director Werner Herzog; Audio Commentary with Werner Herzog, Moderated by Laurens Straub (in German with English Subtitles); Theatrical trailer; Still gallery

Cast & Crew

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Aguirre The Wrath Of God 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Herzog's loose adaptation on an obscure 16th century Spanish expedition that disappeared in the Amazon basin in search of the legendary city of El Dorado. Filmed on location near Machu Pichu with locals as extras, the merit of the film goes into the direction and the acting as opposed to film quality. Produced and directed on a college-level budget (Herzog actually had to steal his alma mater's filming equipment for this film), the film quality is somewhat coarse and similar to cameras and film used for documentary footage. Another drawback is that it's only in mono and has no dolby or other stereo sound options. Despite these technical limitations, Herzog's choices of scenes, pacing, and editing, along with Kinski's superb acting, result in a brilliant film. The theme of unchecked ambition leading to madness and eventual oblivion is beautifully carried by the plot's depiction of how the overconfident explorers, led by their greed, drift, fight, and decay ever further into the wilderness. With King and Church far away, Aguire's promise of gold and power leads a small group of deluded followers to mutiny and eventual oblivion. As their voyage progresses and the further the characters are removed from any shred of civilization, madness seems strangely sane and the unending lust for power somehow satiable. Also visible are the thematic parallels with the megalomanic rise and inevitable destruction of Nazi Germany. The synthesized droning background music adds to the sense of delirium and to the film's dreamlike qualities.
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