Ganja & Hess

Directed by Bill Gunn
Year: 1973
Running Time: 113 minutes
Country: U.S.
Language: English

Flirting with the conventions of blaxploitation and horror, Bill Gunn’s revolutionary independent film GANJA & HESS is a highly stylized and utterly original treatise on sex, religion, and African American identity. Duane Jones (Night of the Living Dead) stars as anthropologist Hess Green, who is stabbed with an ancient ceremonial dagger by his unstable assistant (director Bill Gunn), bestowing upon him the blessing of immortality... and the curse of an unquenchable thirst for blood. When the assistant’s beautiful and outspoken wife Ganja (Marlene Clark) comes searching for her missing husband, she and Hess form an unexpected partnership. Together, they explore just how much power blood holds.

"A sensual, scholarly, magic-realist exploration of black history and black desire."


"An underground classic! The most complicated, intriguing, subtle, sophisticated and passionate black film of the '70s."


"A blood-soaked masterpiece. One of the most profound, surreal and horrifying love stories ever made."


"A visionary filmmaker."


Cast
Mabel King
Leonard Jackson
Sam Waymon
Duane Jones
Marlene Clark
Bill Gunn

Crew
Writer Bill Gunn
Produced by Chiz Schults
Directed by Bill Gunn