Antonio das Mortes / O Dragão da Maldade contra o Santo Guerreiro (Glauber Rocha, 1969)

Didn’t find a thread on this one, now here is one. Database link:ão_da_Maldade_contra_o_Santo_Guerreiro,_O

I have done some updates on the film’s page and DVD page and added a review:

There are some mentions of the film on other threads though, Here are some:

stanton (O’Cangaceiro)
Jan '07
I have seen it many years ago. And also Antonio das Mortes. These are allegorical, political films by Glauber Rocha. They are using western elements but are closer to Godard. Interesting stuff.

ChrisCasey (The last movie you watched?)
Dec '09
ANTONIO DAS MORTE This is a film I had been aching to see for ages! I searched for a copy for years and years—so, finally I got the chance to see it! And, sad to say, I was highly disappointed. I should have expected it, I guess, but the film was just way too artsy for me. And by artsy, I mean it focused too much on its agenda and not enough on being entertaining. I don’t want to make you think that I don’t appreciate art, or highly political, films when I actually do. But, this one just doesn’t work, for me, overall. That said though, I must admit that there were some pretty cool visual moments in the film and I am certainly glad I had the opportunity to see it, after such a long long time.

El_Topo (What film are you watching tonight?)
Mar '10
Last night in DVD (my fryday’s night suck, now that I’m old and married) was Brazilian Glauber Rocha “Deus e o Diabo na terra do Sol”, [/b] In a way is a Western a South American Western
I can say for shure that this movie was a influence in SW, and in the way they were made (for shure Leone as seen it), It’s not my fav from Glauber I do prefer Antonio das Mortes, but it´s a great movie, it starts great, but the pace slows down till the end, but this was made in 1964, you have to put in context of the time, and there was nothing like this at the time

El_Topo (I just bought… (non-SW shopping diary))
Apr '10

Antonio das Mortes - how did I miss this being released in a double-disc set in Brazil?
Also due for release in the UK, but that’s likely to be bare bones.

It’s not an easy film Starblack, I think that Deus e o Diabo na terra do Sol - God and the Devil in the Land of the Sun, it’s his best film, it’s for me Rocha’s masterpiece.
Antonio das Mortes or O dragão da maldade contra o santo guerreiro it’s even more political and sometimes loses focus, and if you do not know his filmography can even be boring IMO, but still a great film for me. But works even better if you already saw Deus e o Diabo na terra do Sol

alk0 (The last movie you watched?)
Jul '11
Antonio das Mortes (not a western at all, but it is listed in the database, that’s why i put it here; Glauber Rocha is a truly fascinating filmaker, i like his movies a lot)

tomas (Spaghetti western character)
Sep '15

This might be a question for “i want to find this SW” thread, but …
I’d read some time ago about two, or three, probably spanish (or mexican, or even brazilian) westerns, featuring the same character - enigmatic black clad gunman with dark long hair and he probably had a rifle.
I totally forgot about it, and now i can’t remember, on which site i’d read that. I’d say these films were made in seventies (but wouldn’t bet on it). Does it ring a bell? Anyone?

tomas, you probably mean Glauber Rocha’s Black God, White Devil and its sequel Antonio das Mortes - and it is really a brazilian venture

Saw Deus e o diabo na terra do sol eight years ago at the Austrian Film Museum and found it unique and rather compelling. Rainer Werner Fassbinder paid tribute to Glauber Rocha and Antônio das Mortes with his (and Michael Fengler’s) Niklashauser Fart – and probably with the title of one of his earlier movies, Rio das Mortes. First lines in Niklashauser Fart: „Wer braucht die Revolution?“ (“Who needs the revolution?”) – „Das Volk.“ (“The people.”) – „Und … wer macht die Revolution?“ (“And … who makes the revolution?”) – „Das Volk.“ Fassbinder shot both films in 1970, “Fart” doesn’t mean what you think it means, but it should.

The correct word is actually Fahrt and not Fart. Translated: Journey to Niklashausen

Yes, I guess Fassbinder wanted to give his title a historical, medieval touch by omitting the letter h.

Is it worth watching?

On the SWDB page Antonio das Mortes is categorized as a Euro Western produced in France, Brazil and West Germany. It seems to me a Brazilian film through and through, and that it should be listed as a Brazilian western (and with a Brazilian flag!). I hereby put the question before the Forum. Silence will be taken as approval.

Admittedly, the opening credits start out: Claude-Antoine présente … une production Claude Antoine Mapa Glauber Rocha … The Internet Movie Database names three production companies: Mapa Filmes, Claude Antoine Films and Munich Tele-Pool (uncredited). The Cinemateca Brasileira names only one: Mapa Filmes. So Claude-Antoine was a French producer. It doesn’t mean the film should have the flag of the European Union for ever tagged to its name…

Definitely. Niklashauser Fart owes a lot to Godard’s filmic approach during the second half of the sixties and is arguably Fassbinder’s most theoretical work. Actually, it’s rather an essay in pictures than a movie.

I wrote this about it on the SWDB facebook page:

Haven’t seen the movie, so can’t say too much about it. Usually I’m not a fan of these ‘experimental’ borderline spaghetti-non-spaghettis, but who knows this one is worth a watch. The idea of foreigners wanting to invest their money in activities in a third world country, seems to link it to the Zapata westerns, even if the political message seem to be less outspoken here (as said in the review).

One of Brecht plays was btw at the base of The Mercenary. I wrote this about it in my review ( ) of the movie:

“For The Mercenary, [Corbucci] got hold of a story by Franco Solinas and Giorgio Arlorio. The original script had been influenced by ‘The Exception and the Rule’ (Die Ausnahme und die Regel), one of Bertold Brecht’s famous so-called Lehrstücke (Teaching plays). Brecht’s play is about a rich merchant who must cross the desert to close an oil deal. During the trip the class differences between him and his working-class porter become clear. Eventually the merchant kills the porter when both are lost in the desert and he feels threatened by him. In court the merchant is acquitted, even though it has become clear that the porter didn’t threaten the merchant, but wanted to give him his last water instead.”

Don’t know exactly which films you are referring to, but it’s not another El Topo… What I can say is Rocha is certainly not another director playing around with the SW genre cliches. It’s a quite genuine film, more like a kindred spirit to some of the political Italian westerns. On me it made quite an impression. As you have seen more Mexican westerns than most here, maybe you would like it.

I’ll give it a try.

I didn’t mean any specific movie in particular, more in general movies that are, or are not (spaghetti) westerns. On facebook (don’t know if you’re active on it), somebody referred to another movie (that I have not seen):

“The theatre of Bertolt Brecht seems to be the main European influence, the style is experimental but very firmly rooted in Brazil, not at all “transnational” like the SW always was. The anachronistic Do Not Touch the White Woman by Marco Ferreri is maybe the closest thing the European western has to offer.”

I haven’t seen it, and after what I have read on it I think I’ll pass. It’s in Alex Cox’s top twenty though.

Yes, it is a Brazilian film, and certainly not a western. It is also not influenced by Spags, as the earlier film God and the Devil in the Land of the Sun, in which the character of Antonio already appeared, was shot before the Spag craze started, and long before the political SWs were made.

God and the Devil in the Land of the Sun has nothing to with a western. When Rocha made Antonio das Mortes, however, “he set out to ‘recover the atmosphere’ of the American western” (Frayling). He is said to be especially inspired by Peckinpah’s Ride the High Country (Grant and Frayling). There is no mention of a SW influence on Antonio das Mortes in what little I have read on Rocha. But I cannot see how he could not have been influenced by these films. Antonio in my opinion has a strong resemblance to La resa di conti. It premiered in Brazil in 1966, so Rocha might very well have seen it before he made Antonio das Mortes.