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Aguirre, the Wrath of God (1972)

Aguirre, der Zorn Gottes (original title)
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In the 16th century, the ruthless and insane Don Lope de Aguirre leads a Spanish expedition in search of El Dorado.

Director:

Werner Herzog

Writer:

Werner Herzog
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4 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Klaus Kinski ... Don Lope de Aguirre
Helena Rojo ... Inez
Del Negro Del Negro ... Brother Gaspar de Carvajal
Ruy Guerra ... Don Pedro de Ursua
Peter Berling ... Don Fernando de Guzman
Cecilia Rivera Cecilia Rivera ... Flores
Daniel Ades Daniel Ades ... Perucho
Edward Roland Edward Roland ... Okello
Alexandra Cheves Alexandra Cheves ... (as Alejandro Chavez)
Armando Polanah Armando Polanah ... Armando
Daniel Farfán Daniel Farfán
Julio E. Martínez Julio E. Martínez ... (as Julio Martinez)
Alejandro Repullés Alejandro Repullés ... Gonzalo Pizarro
Indianern der Kooperative Lauramarca Indianern der Kooperative Lauramarca
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Storyline

A few decades after the destruction of the Inca empire, a Spanish expedition leaves the mountains of Peru and goes down the Amazon river in search of gold and wealth. Soon, they come across great difficulties and Don Aguirres, a ruthless man who cares only about riches, becomes their leader. But will his quest lead them to "the golden city", or to certain destruction? Written by Chris Makrozahopoulos <makzax@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A breathtaking journey into the heart of darkness. See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

West Germany

Language:

English | Quechua | Spanish | German

Release Date:

3 April 1977 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Aguirre, the Wrath of God See more »

Filming Locations:

Huayna Picchu, Peru See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$370,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

During one scene set in a native village, Klaus Kinski hits one of the crewmen over the head with his sword. The blow nearly killed the man, and only his helmet saved his life. See more »

Goofs

In the first scene of the movie the characters was walking on Huayna Picchu on 1560, but this location was discovered only in 1911 by the American historian Hiram Bingham. See more »

Quotes

Okello: [Hallucinating] That is no ship. That is no forest.
[Arrow hits him]
Okello: That is no arrow. We just imagine the arrows because we fear them.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The original released version is spoken in German. The actors spoke a variety of languages on set (including English), and the lines had to be re-recorded in post-production in the final language. Because of this, the dubbed English version is preferred by some. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Midnight Movie Review: Valhalla Rising (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Aguirre, Der Zorn Gottes (Lacrime Di Re)
Written by Florian Fricke
Performed by Popol Vuh
Published by Edition Intro Meisel
Courtesy of Gammarock Music
See more »

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User Reviews

Herzog's masterpiece
14 November 2001 | by cinemadazSee all my reviews

AGUIRRE: THE WRATH OF GOD (1972) Spaniards in search of El Dorado descend down an intense mountain peak with barely a path on it. Men slosh through a wet jungle forest with cannibals, dragging horses, cannons and women on thrones with them. Rafts try to navigate harsh rapids with no end in sight, sending one of them into a whirlpool. This is the first ten minutes. And it is probably easier than what it took to make the film.

Werner Herzog's masterpiece follows Klaus Kinski as a conquistador leading a group of men through his personal madness in Peru, searching for the mythical city of gold. Kinski wasn't an actor, he was a time-traveller, and his performances for Herzog are his best. My favorite scene of all his work is in this film early-on: as the huge group of slaves struggle and burn their souls carrying a woman on a throne-chair against the unforgiving jungle mud and trees, Kinski suddenly appears in the middle to offer a helping hand. He writhes and morphs, grabbing the slaves and shoving them, screaming at the top of his lungs, "Fools!!! The sedan chair is stuck!"

AGUIRRE is what got Herzog noticed around the world as part of a new group of German filmmakers along with Fassbinder and Wenders. His previous film was EVEN DWARVES STARTED SMALL, which resulted in Kinski calling him, "A mere dwarf director." The battles between he and Kinski should be legendary by now. The final result in Herzog stating he will grab his gun and kill both himself and Kinski as the actor was threatening to leave the production. Kinski was convinced and finished the film.

This story and more is part of the excellent analog track by Herzog, covering all of the hardcore production that overwhelms the more famous Coppola problems making Apocalypse Now. Herzog didn't have millions of dollars, rather 300 grand, had to live on the rafts for months and deal with the jungle and Kinski. But he never bitches - you do what you have to do, and the film is never compromised, from the costumes, the beautiful real locations and the boat hanging in the tree to the eerie group of small monkeys at the end (which Herzog had to steal, even though he paid for them). The analog track is constant (many now seem to take pauses to watch the film) with background on the idea, actors, filming and philosophies. Yes, that is a real mummy in the cannibal camp, for which Herzog's brother had to buy a passenger ticket for the plane ride over.

The DVD is another fantastic release giving the nice treatment to a title that can't be making them millionaires. The image looks great and is not letterboxed, so I assume that that is how Herzog prefers it. The three trailers didn't add much to the presentation, but that's a minor point. When they are finished with the entire Herzog collection, it will be one of the most fascinating career studies on DVD.


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