Santa Sangre (1989) - Rotten Tomatoes

Santa Sangre1989

Santa Sangre (1989)



Critic Consensus: Those unfamiliar with Alejandro Jodorowsky's style may find it overwhelming, but Santa Sangre is a provocative psychedelic journey featuring the director's signature touches of violence, vulgarity, and an oddly personal moral center.

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Movie Info

Santa Sangre is the surreal horror story about a young man, Fenix (Axel Jodorowsky) who has grown up in a circus with his mother Concha (Blanca Guerra) and his philandering father. Fenix witnesses a brutal fight between his mother and father, at the end of which his mother loses both of her arms and his father commits suicide. Fenix spends years in an insane asylum, before his mother persuades him to act as her hands in her bizarre nightclub act. Soon, Concha is having Fenix perform a variety of murders, where he is killing every female in sight. Though the film has some of the hallucinatory qualities of Jodorowsky's earlier films, Santa Sangre doesn't quite have the same punch, particularly in terms of cerebral and emotional impact, despite its fine visuals. Santa Sangre is available in both R-rated and NC-17 edits.

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Adan Jodorowsky
as Fenix, Age 8
Axel Jodorowsky
as Fenix, Age 20
Faviola Tapia
as Young Alma
Thelma Tixou
as Tattooed Woman
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Critic Reviews for Santa Sangre

All Critics (43) | Top Critics (15)

You can say this: It is never boring.

November 15, 2013 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

Santa Sangre's content puts it beyond the call of duty for even the most slavishly devoted art-house denizen.

November 15, 2013 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

What Jodorowsky lacks is a sense of humor, in the absence of which his films turn ludicrous.

November 15, 2013 | Rating: 2/4

Drawing on his training in mime and his fascination with Gnosticism, Jodorowsky converted a story about a bizarre murderer into a grand work of art, full of symbols and imagery that reach beyond language to something primal and original.

November 26, 2012 | Rating: A-
Top Critic

Visionary and haunting, Santa Sangre is a mixture of blood poetry and gobbledygook that keeps springing astonishingly to life.

November 26, 2012

Not as good as his previous El Topo, but pretty eye-opening all the same.

September 21, 2012 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Santa Sangre


Part Dario Argento, part Pedro Almodóvar, part Quentin Tarantino. What a macabre work of art!

Randy Tippy
Randy Tippy

Super Reviewer


A new favorite of mine.

Michael S
Michael S

Super Reviewer


In between hallucinations a young man kills at the telepathic command of his armless mother. Jodoworsky's takes a stab at making a surrrealist slasher flick, and the result is his most accessible film.

Greg S
Greg S

Super Reviewer

Santa Sangre Quotes

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