THE LAST SUPPER (LA ÚLTIMA CENA) (1976)

Synopsis

Attempting to fulfill a religious obligation, the Count of a sugar mill in Cuba at the end of the eighteenth century decides to recreate the Last Supper, playing Jesus Christ himself and randomly selecting twelve slaves as his disciples.  Tensions break out between Don Manuel, a cruel, hardened overseer who believes that slaves have nothing to do with God and that letting slaves eat at the master's table is a ridiculous and dangerous practice, and the priest of the mill who believes Christians have a duty to educate and convert the slaves.  Among the twelve slaves picked is Sebastian, a stubborn and determined slave who has had his ear cut off and fed to dogs after his most recent escape attempt.  The Count makes sure Sebastian is seated at the table and gives him the role of Judas for his inability to embrace life at the mill as Judas failed to embrace Christ.  The master and slaves get drunk, and the master makes several promises during the dinner that he either forgets or refuses to keep, among them the promise that the slaves will not have to work Good Friday.  The slaves are forced to work, however, causing a revolt that will lead to the beheading of all the slaves at the dinner except Sebastian, who may have strange powers no one thought possible.  The Last Supper is a chilling look at the western view of slavery through the centuries, showing a world in which whites and blacks do not understand the consequences of their actions.
 
 

Copyright (c) 2000 by Sean Patrick Magee, Graduate student at Lehigh University.

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