Aguirre, the Wrath of God

Aguirre, the Wrath of God (; ; ) is a 1972 epic historical drama film produced, written and directed by Werner Herzog. Klaus Kinski stars in the title role of Spanish soldier Lope de Aguirre, who leads a group of conquistadores down the Amazon River in South America in search of the legendary city of gold, El Dorado. The soundtrack was composed and performed by kosmische band Popol Vuh. The film is an international co-production between West Germany and Mexico.


On Christmas Day, 1560, several scores of Spanish conquistadors, and a hundred native slaves, march down from the newly conquered Inca Empire in the Andes mountains into the jungles to the east, in search of the fabled country of El Dorado. Under the command of Gonzalo Pizarro, the men, clad in half armor, pull cannons down narrow mountain paths and through dense, muddy jungle. On New Year's Eve, reaching the end of his supplies and unable to go on without more information, Pizarro orders a group of forty men to scout ahead by raft down river. If they do not return to the main party within one week with news of what lies beyond, they will be considered lost. Pizarro chooses Don Pedro de Ursúa as the commander of the expedition, Don Lope de Aguirre as his second-in-command, fat nobleman Don Fernando de Guzmán to represent the Royal House of Spain, and Brother Gaspar de Carvajal to bring the word of God. Also accompanying the expedition, against Pizarro's better judgment, are Ursúa's mistress, Doña Inés and Aguirre's teenage daughter, Flores.