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The Serpent and the Rainbow (1988)

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An anthropologist goes to Haiti after hearing rumors about a drug used by black magic practitioners to turn people into zombies.

Director:

Wes Craven

Writers:

Wade Davis (inspired by the book), Richard Maxwell (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Bill Pullman ... Dennis Alan
Cathy Tyson ... Marielle Duchamp
Zakes Mokae ... Dargent Peytraud
Paul Winfield ... Lucien Celine
Brent Jennings ... Louis Mozart
Conrad Roberts ... Christophe
Badja Djola ... Gaston
Theresa Merritt ... Simone
Michael Gough ... Schoonbacher
Paul Guilfoyle ... Andrew Cassedy
Dey Young ... Mrs. Cassedy
Aleta Mitchell Aleta Mitchell ... Celestine
William Newman ... French Missionary Doctor
Jaime Pina Gautier Jaime Pina Gautier ... Julio (as Jaime Piña Gautier)
Evencio Mosquera Slaco Evencio Mosquera Slaco ... Old Shaman
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Storyline

In 1985, after a successful research in Amazonas, Dr. Dennis Alan from Harvard is invited by the president of a Boston pharmaceutics industry, Andrew Cassedy, to travel to Haiti to investigate the case of a man named Christophe that died in 1978 and has apparently returned to life. Andrew wants samples of the voodoo drug that was used in Christophe to be tested with the intention of producing a powerful anesthetic. Dr. Alan travels to meet Dr. Marielle Duchamp that is treating Christophe and arrives in Haiti in a period of revolution. Soon Alan is threatened by the chief of the feared Tonton Macuse Dargent Peytraud, who is a torturer and powerful witch. Alan learns that death is not the end in the beginning of his journey to hell. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Don't bury me...I'm not dead!

Genres:

Fantasy | Horror

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French | Spanish

Release Date:

5 February 1988 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La serpiente y el arco iris See more »

Filming Locations:

Boston, Massachusetts, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,848,000, 7 February 1988, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$19,595,031
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Dr. Alan is poisoned in Lucien Celine's villa, he grabs a Haitian man who emphatically shouts "No! No! No! No!". This extra actor was seen earlier in the film playing a grave robber where he shouts the same phrase (his only spoken line) as he flees a cemetery following discovery by Alan and Marielle Duchamp. See more »

Goofs

When the Duvalier government is overthrown, it is stated to be "in the middle of the night", yet news reels show cheering crowds outside in the daylight in the middle of the day. See more »

Quotes

Dargent Peytraud: This country lives on the edge, Doctor Alan. One weakness in the wrong place and over it goes right back into slavery again, just like with the French. The United States would like anarchy here, I'm sure. Well this isn't Grenada, Doctor Alan! I'm here now! There are people like me who'll make sure that doesn't happen. You'll remember that.
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Crazy Credits

[Opening card] In the legends of voodoo the Serpent is a symbol of Earth. The Rainbow is a symbol of Heaven. Between the two, all creatures must live and die. But because he has a soul Man can be trapped in a terrible place Where death is only the beginning. See more »

Alternate Versions

UK video and DVD versions are cut by 5 seconds by the BBFC to remove shots of cock-fighting (illegal animal cruelty). See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Wizard of Gore (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Madame Marcel
Performed by Le Roi Coupe Cloue
Courtesy of Chancy Records
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Death is not the End in Haiti
7 March 2015 | by claudio_carvalhoSee all my reviews

In 1985, after a successful research in Amazonas, Dr. Dennis Alan (Bill Pullman) from Harvard is invited by the president of a Boston pharmaceutics industry, Andrew Cassedy (Paul Guilfoyle), to travel to Haiti to investigate the case of a man named Christophe (Conrad Roberts) that died in 1978 and has apparently returned to life. Andrew wants samples of the voodoo drug that was used in Christophe to be tested with the intention of producing a powerful anesthetic. Dr. Alan travels to meet Dr. Marielle Duchamp (Cathy Tyson) that is treating Christophe and arrives in Haiti in a period of revolution. Soon Alan is threatened by the chief of the feared Tonton Macuse Dargent Peytraud (Zakes Mokae), who is a torturer and powerful witch. Alan learns that death is not the end in the beginning of his journey to hell.

"The Serpent and the Rainbow" is one of the creepiest and most originals zombie movie ever produced. Directed by Wes Craven, the story uses the background of political environment of Haiti and entwines horror and politics. Bill Pullman has good performance and Cathy "Mona Lisa" Tyson completes the romantic pair of the story. But Zakes Mokae "steals" the movie with a scary performance in the role of the wicked Peytraud. My vote is seven.

Title (Brazil): "A Maldição dos Mortos-Vivos" ("The Curse of the Living Dead")


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