When the Portuguese colonized Brazil, they enslaved as many of the local native population as they could lay their hands on to work on their plantations. This movie, set in the 18th century, tells the story of one tribal chieftain, an actual historical figure, who actively fought against the Portuguese. Legend has it that he could transform himself into an animal or a bird at need. In a parallel drama, the enslavement of native peoples by modern drug-barons is also depicted.
~ Clarke Fountain, All Movie Guide