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Brazil · 2019
2h 11m
Director Kleber Mendonça Filho, Juliano Dornelles
Starring Bárbara Colen, Udo Kier, Sônia Braga, Thomas Aquino
Genre Mystery, Thriller, Western

A Brazilian village finds its sun-dappled day-to-day disturbed when its inhabitants are targeted by a group of armed mercenaries led by the violent and vicious Udo Kier. But the mercenaries may have met their match in the fed-up, resourceful denizens of little Bacurau in this bitingly satirical and violent revisionist Western.

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What are people saying?

Nina Gallagher Profile picture for Nina Gallagher

Bacurau is an incredibly interesting dystopian political satire focusing on the racism and classism experienced by poorer northeastern Brazilians. The film pulls no punches in critiquing western capitalism and the historical colonization of the global south. While Bacurau can be sharp and serious, there are also moments throughout the film that allow it to be darkly hilarious. Despite the rather gruesome violence, you won't be able to stop watching.

What are critics saying?


The A.V. Club by A.A. Dowd

There are those who will surely argue that this is not a tonally coherent film. But I was nonetheless rather elated by the way Filho weaves in so many outside touchstones while still maintaining his core interests in social dynamics and anti-capitalist sentiment.


The Playlist by Bradley Warren

There may not be a map for navigating this gonzo film, but nevertheless, Bacurau is a blood-soaked adventure worth seeking out.


IndieWire by David Ehrlich

At once both more forceful and more inscrutable than Filho’s previous work, Bacurau plunges deeper into midnight territory as its core ideas take hold, its ghosts become literal, and its heroes take up arms.


Los Angeles Times by Justin Chang

The resulting genre stew is rich and flavorsome, if also somewhat chunky and uneven. The characters are thinly drawn by design, but Mendonça Filho and Dornelles know how to use the magnetism of their actors to maximum advantage.


CineVue by Martyn Conterio

This might not be the film you’re quite expecting from the director of arthouse dramas focused on modern life in Brazil, but it fits right in as a variation and continuation of Mendonça Filho’s pet themes.


The Guardian by Peter Bradshaw

It is a really strange film, beginning in a kind of ethno-anthropology and documentary style, becoming a poisoned-herd parable or fever dream and then a Jacobean-style bloodbath. It is an utterly distinctive film-making, executed with ruthless clarity and force.


Variety by Peter Debruge

Though shot in striking anamorphic widescreen and laced with references to John Carpenter, Sergio Leone and the like, Bacurau doesn’t quite work in traditional genre-movie terms. Rather, it demands the extra labor of unpacking its densely multilayered subtext to appreciate.


TheWrap by Steve Pond

It’s disturbing and messy, a fever dream for a disturbing and messy time in Brazil. And occasionally, it’s a lot of fun, too.

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