Armageddon Films has released a new film by producer and director Paco del Toro, entitled “Saint Death,” which focuses on the bizarre devotion that has become popular among some in Mexico.
The 100 minute-long film looks into what’s behind the devotion to “Saint Death,” who grants apparent “miracles” but afterwards “requires payment” for the favors granted. The main characters in the film pray to “Saint Death” for good health, fortune and love, but at a high price.
Rubi, played by Karla Alvarez, is a worried mother whose daughter has only a few days left in her battle against cancer. She desperately turns to anything for help, including to Saint Death. Her husband Pablo, played by Harry Geithner, begins to argue with her over the altar she has set up in their home. The paranormal phenomenon that they experience in their home leads to a loss of peace and sense that something is not right. Their daughter Perlita, played by Ana Sofia Camacho, is caught up in the promises her mother made to Saint Death in return for her cure.
Meanwhile, Gustave, played by Julio Casado, is experiencing unemployment and is drowning in debts. Completely in love with Cecilia, played by Wendy Braga, a woman who only cares about luxuries and comfort, Gustavo ends up trying to meet her every whim. His luck suddenly changes when his friend Mauro, played by Mario Zaragoza, encourages him to have a devotion to Saint Death. Gustavo will get everything that he wants, in return for practicing his devotion for the rest of his life.
The devotion to Saint Death, who is depicted as a skeleton dressed in a tunic and holding a sickle, has become popular among many Mexicans. It is believed that the devotion began in Veracruz in the early 19th century. The devotion is also present in other countries of Latin America, including Brazil, Paraguay, Bolivia and Argentina.
In Mexico the devotion has some two million followers who “pray” to Saint Death for revenge or to escape punishment for crimes.
“The devotion to Saint Death,” says director Paco del Toro, “has spread greatly throughout Latin America. Its incredible that people adore a skeleton and even call it a ‘saint,’ when God refers to death in Scripture as ‘an enemy that will be destroyed at the end’.”
“I think it is all a consequence of the need of the human being to fill the spiritual emptiness of his heart and of the mixture of beliefs and doctrines that circulate in society today,” Toro added.
“Unfortunately for those who pray to ‘Saint Death,’ the devil, who is the one who performs all these miracles and favors, never gives you anything for free, he always demands payment, if not in this life, in the next,” he said.
“Saint Death” hits theaters in September.