Aguirre, the Wrath of God

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Aguirre, the Wrath of God (German: Aguirre, der Zorn Gottes) is a 1972 German film about a ruthless and insane man who leads a Spanish expedition in search of El Dorado in the 16th century.

Directed and written by Werner Herzog.
A breathtaking journey into the heart of darkness. (taglines)

Don Lope de Aguirre[edit]

  • That man is a head taller than me. That may change.
  • I am the great traitor. There must be no other. Anyone who even thinks about deserting this mission will be cut up into 98 pieces. Those pieces will be stamped on until what is left can be used only to paint walls. Whoever takes one grain of corn or one drop of water more than his ration... will be locked up for 155 years. If I, Aguirre, want the birds to drop dead from the trees... then the birds will drop dead from the trees. I am the Wrath of God. The earth I pass will see me and tremble. Whoever follows me and the river, will win untold riches. Whoever deserts...
  • When we reach the sea, we'll build a bigger boat, and with it we'll sail north and take Trinidad away from the Spanish Crown. From there we'll go on and take Mexico from Cortés. What a great betrayal that will be! We will then control all of New Spain and we will stage history as others stage plays. I, the Wrath of God, will marry my own daughter and with her found the purest dynasty ever known to man. Together we will rule the whole of this continent. I am the Wrath... the Wrath of God... Who else is with me?


  • Once I was a prince, and men were forbidden to look on me. Now I am in chains.
    • German dub: I was a prince in this country. Everyone else had to cast down their gaze before me, and no one dared look me in the eye. But now I am in chains, like my people. Now I must look at the ground.

Gaspar de Caravajal[edit]

  • [Reading Aguirre's letter of treason] We rebel until death. Our hands shall perish and our tongues dry up if this is not so. The House of Habsburg has lost all rights. And you, Philip the Second, are dethroned. By dint of this declaration you are annihilated. In your place we proclaim the nobleman from Sevilla, Don Fernando de Guzman as Emperor of El Dorado. Flee from hence, O King! And may God bless your soul.


  • [Hallucinating] That is no ship. That is no forest. [Arrow hits him] That is no arrow. We just imagine the arrows because we fear them.


Aguirre: Perucho, don't you think the cannon might be a little bit rusty?
Perucho: It might.

Don Fernando de Guzman: All the land to our left and all the land to our right now belongs to us. I solemnly and formally take possession of all this land. Our country is already six times larger than Spain, and everyday we drift makes it bigger.
Aguirre: Have you seen any solid ground that would support your weight?

Gaspar: Has this heathen heard of our Saviour, Jesus Christ and of our mission and the True Word of God? This is a Bible. It contains the Word of God that we are bringing to lighten the darkness of their world. Has he understood that this Book contains the Word of God? Take it in your hand, my son.
Balthasar: He says it doesn't speak. [Native man throws down the Bible; Gaspar runs him through.]
Gaspar (narrating): It is hard work. These natives are hard to convert.

Gaspar: [Mortally wounded] This arrow cannot hurt me. This is not rain. [swings sword at Aguirre]
Aguirre: Monk, do not forget to pray. Otherwise it could end badly with God.


  • A breathtaking journey into the heart of darkness.
  • On this river, God never finished his creation.


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