Only God Forgives is dedicated to one of cinema’s true visionaries, Alejandro Jodorowsky, the genius filmmaker behind works such as El Topo (1970) and The Holy Mountain (1973).
A frustrated attempt to adapt Frank Herbert’s sci-fi tome Dune meant there were fallow years when Jodorowsky’s work was not getting to cinema screens, so Santa Sangre was a cause for celebration when it appeared, and it remains one; it’s bizarre, beautiful, and brilliant.
It concerns a troubled man in a mental institution whose life story is revealed in flashback, a child of circus performers involved with a religious cult that worships an armless patron saint. (Notes by Michael Hayden.)
Screening as part of Wanna Fight? (August 3rd – 31st), our season recognising the influences on director Nicolas Winding Refn and the roots of Only God Forigves.