An Angel Is Born (1969)

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An Angel is Born takes up the tried and tested theme of a criminal with a conscience and twists it in a unpredictable direction. Santamaria is a gangster with a higher calling. Pushed into crime by economic events beyond his control, Santamaria is waiting for the day that God will pardon him for his sins. As he falls further and further into Sao Paulo's underworld, he spins a more and more complex eschatology out this theory. Soon Santamaria has decided that one day he will be visited by an angel who will absolve him and carry him to heaven. The twisted catch is that the farther Santamaria falls, the sooner the angel arrives. To expedite the process, Santamaria commits a series of ultra-violent crimes shocking rendered by Bressane's fast paced editing and use of non-diagetic sound. Eventually he drives himself insane and comes to believe that he himself is the angel.