VIVA LA MUERTE (Long live Death) centers on Fando (Mahdi Chaouch), a young boy whose father has been arrested for treason during the Spanish civil war. Fando struggles with his father’s arrest, and in a shocking moment discovers a letter in which his mother admits to betraying his father. His mother convinces him that his father committed suicide in prison, but Fando doubts this and attempts to discover the true fate of his father.
The debut film of Spanish playwright Fernando Arrabal, VIVA LA MUERTE is a surreal tour-de-force considered by many critics to be the pinnacle of Spanish avant-garde filmmaking. Fueled with surreal images of violence, sexuality and biting political commentary, the film posits Arrabal as one of the preeminent Spanish-language surrealists alongside Luis Buñuel and Alejandro Jodorowsky.