Your Company

Cobra Verde

✭ ✭ ✭   Read critic reviews

West Germany, Ghana · 1987
1h 51m
Director Werner Herzog
Starring Klaus Kinski, King Ampaw, José Lewgoy, Salvatore Basile
Genre Adventure, Drama

Violent bandit Cobra Verde is hired by a sugar plantation owner to supervise his hundreds of enslaved workers. When he turns out to be more raucous and unpredictable than the plantation owner bargained for, Verde is exiled to West Africa, where he is expected to reopen the slave trade with Brazil. There, he fights to overthrow a monarch and install himself as king.

Stream Cobra Verde

What are people saying?

What are critics saying?


Village Voice by

It's easy to understand why this was Herzog's final collaboration with the actor (reportedly the director afterward claimed that Kinski had "become uncontrollable") but Kinski's performance nevertheless serves up a potent confusion of documentary and fiction that has long been an essential element of Herzog's filmmaking.


The New York Times by A.O. Scott

Connoisseurs of craziness need wait no longer. Cobra Verde opens today in all its feral, baffling glory. Along with "Aguirre" and "Fitzcarraldo," Cobra Verde completes a trilogy of mayhem and megalomania in hot climates.


TV Guide Magazine by Maitland McDonagh

Linear storytelling was never Herzog's strong suit even under the best of conditions. His strength lies in capturing lucid lunacy on film, and Manoel da Silva's descent into the jaws of madness is a straight shot into the heart of darkness, a place familiar to both Herzog and Kinski.


The New Republic by Stanley Kauffmann

It is too weak to say that Herzog disregards conventions of narrative structure and editing: he is there to punish us for attending his film and to make us enjoy it. Other directors have at times made masochists of us: Herzog excels at this, and he doesn't often do it more stunningly than in Cobra Verde.

Users who liked this film also liked