Rocha's sequel to his own Black God, White Devil returns to the Brazilian Sertao in the period after 1940, the key year in which the last of the cangaceiro bandits was killed. The legendary 'warrior saint' Antonio is now the central character, and the movie celebrates his turn against the military regime that hires him, offering his righteous fight as a model for all revolutionary resistance. This time, though, Rocha completely rejects the elements of realism that made his earlier films particularly obscure: the movie is styled and paced like a Leone Western, and is as flamboyantly operatic as a Jancsó parable. Interestingly, the lack of direct historical references makes the result all the more venomously agitational.
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