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Long Live Death (1971)

Viva la muerte (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, War | 12 May 1971 (France)
At the end of the Spanish civil war, Fando, a boy of about ten, tries to make sense of war and his father's arrest. His mother is religious, sympathetic to the Fascists; his father is ... See full summary »

Director:

Fernando Arrabal (as Arrabal)

Writers:

Fernando Arrabal (by) (as Arrabal), Fernando Arrabal (novel) (as Arrabal) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Anouk Ferjac ... La Tante / The aunt
Núria Espert ... La Mère / The mother
Mahdi Chaouch Mahdi Chaouch ... Fando / Son
Ivan Henriques Ivan Henriques ... Tosan / Le Père-The father
Jazia Klibi Jazia Klibi ... Thérèse / Fando's friend
Suzanne Comte Suzanne Comte ... La Grand-mère / Grandmother
Jean-Louis Chassigneux Jean-Louis Chassigneux ... Le Grand-père / Grandfather
Mohamed Bellasoued Mohamed Bellasoued ... Colonel
Victor Garcia Victor Garcia ... Fando / 20 ans-yo
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Storyline

At the end of the Spanish civil war, Fando, a boy of about ten, tries to make sense of war and his father's arrest. His mother is religious, sympathetic to the Fascists; his father is accused of being a Red. Fando discovers that his mother may have aided in his father's arrest. Sometimes we witness Fando imagining explanations for what's going on; sometimes we see him at play, alone or with his friend Thérèse. Oedipal fantasies and a lad's natural curiosity about sex and death mix with his search for his mother's nature and his father's fate. Will Fando survive the search? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

France | Tunisia

Language:

French

Release Date:

12 May 1971 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Long Live Death See more »

Filming Locations:

Tunisia

Company Credits

Production Co:

Isabelle Films, Satpec See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Directorial debut of Fernando Arrabal. See more »

Goofs

When Fando is up at the lighthouse and urinates on the city, a hose behind his legs is clearly visible at times. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Der Todesking (1990) See more »

Soundtracks

Siesta
Written by Raymond Le Sénéchal and Eddie Barclay (as Édouard Ruault)
Performed by Jean-Yves Bosseur Et Ses Amis
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A disturbing hallucinatory masterpiece.
5 July 2005 | by NateManDSee all my reviews

Fernando Arrabal is an author of books and plays. He was part of the panic movement of theater, which also included Alejandro Jodorowsky and Roland Topor. In fact, in the beginning of "Viva La Muerte" we see some morbidly surreal drawings by Topor. The film is semi-autobiographical and takes place during the Franco era in Spain during World War II. Fando witnesses his father seized by soldiers. Fando thinks that his father is dead. Later he finds out his father is still alive and that his mother turned him in to authorities for suspicion of communist activities. The film shows how war affects children. Fando has many grotesque, sadistic, surreal daydreams about his father being tortured by the fascist army. The daydream sequences are done in bright neon filters, with strange music and sound effects, even a children's song. The film makes a strong anti-war statement, and is filled with satirical and blasphemous imagery. Some of the images are extreme, including a real cow slaughter and Fando's mom torturing his dad. She even takes a dump on his head. The extended torture sequences may remind some of what the U.S has been doing to Iraqi prisoners. Although the film is brutal at times, it still is beautiful in its subversive poetry. "Viva la Muerte" is a masterpiece of surrealism and makes an important statement about the evils of war.


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