Every Friday, the Colonel puts on his only suit and goes to the dock to await a letter announcing the arrival of his pension. But the townsfolk all know that this pension will never come. ... See full summary »
Luis Buñuel might have enjoyed this antic fantasy, adapted from a story by Gabriel García Márquez, about an ignorant couple who find the title character (played by director Fernando Birri) washed ashore like driftwood on their crab-infested beach. Is he a fallen angel or simply a freak of nature? No one can say (the old man himself is apparently mute), but after giving him a home in their chicken pen rumors begin to spread of a miraculous visitation, and the unfortunate 'angel' soon becomes both an object of worship and a target of ridicule, sometimes simultaneously. Before too long he's the star attraction in a frenzied carnival midway, competing against the so-called Spider Woman (with her absurd, 'explanatory' semi-porn performance art video) and other sideshow curiosities. The more emotional national characteristics of each country in the Italian-Cuban-Spanish co-production team combine to make it a fast, crude parable of innocence corrupted, blurring the line between religious ecstasy and show-biz hysteria.
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