In the State of Bahia, Brazil, an educated black man returns to his home fishing village to try and free people from mysticism, in particular the Candomblé religion, which he considers a factor of political and social oppression, with tragic outcome.
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"a:they´ve even invented a new word "subversive individual". b: it sounds important" // The word Candomblé means "dance in honour of the gods" (and dance was everywhere in the film, even in the fighting scenes)
Maybe Rocha's best film this is like "La Terra Trema" going Latin America. Splendidly shot in b/w it combines brisk rhythm with elegant pans and offers an original interpetation of radical politics in a post-colonial collective identity struggle. Not making concessions to the locals for their petty-interests and lack of vision, it moves in how the master-slave dialectic unfolds in a community ravaged by misery.
El eterno enfrentamiento entre la civilización y la barbarie es el centro de esta historia que aprovecha en reflejar una mirada juiciosa a estos dos mundos distintos, pero que comparten una tragedia innata que deriva al hombre a su autodestrucción.