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Brazilian Martial Arts Actioner "Besouro" Gets Name Change For USA Release; Now Streaming On Netflix As "The Assailant"

Photo of Tambay A. Obenson By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act March 22, 2012 at 10:22PM

Oh my damn! So there I was breezing through my Netflix recommendations and came across a movie titled The Assailant that had an really familiar cover image.

Oh my damn! So there I was breezing through my Netflix recommendations and came across a movie titled The Assailant that had an really familiar cover image.

I thought, nah, it can't be... could it?

Yes! Yes it was, as I found out after I hit the play button and the film started.

Somehow we missed this last month, because a Canadian distribution company called Phase 4 Films, with partners here in the states, released the film in the USA on February 14th; and not only that, it's actually streaming on Netflix RIGHT NOW, meaning, if you have a Netflix streaming account, you could be watching it RIGHT NOW if you haven't already.

One small problem though (although it may not be much of a problem to you), it's dubbed in English; so no Portuguese with English subtitles, which I prefer (that's how I saw it a year ago or so). And the English-language dub is terrible IMHO; I'm sitting here playing it back, cringing. Although I'm only about 15 minutes in; maybe it gets better.

So if you can tolerate a shitty dub, you can watch Besouro... uh, I mean The Assailant (which completely nullifies the meaning behind the original Besouro title) right this minute. It's in HD by the way, so you'll at least enjoy a nice, crisp image on your TV screen.

Besouro was an Shadow And Act Film Find in 2009, with a trailer that thrilled just about everyone who saw it – or at least, piqued interest. So, we’ve been on this one for awhile now, alerting you to any and all opportunities to see the film, which never received a stateside release, aside from festival screenings here and there.

Long-time readers should be familiar enough with it, given the number of times I've talked about and plugged it.

I’ve seen Besouro... uh I mean The Assailant... twice, first on my computer screen; the second time in a theater, where it's best seen, and I thoroughly enjoyed it on both occasions, and strongly recommend it.

As a reminder… the story goes… As essentially an action movie set in 1920s Bahia, and based on the life of a legendary capoeirista from Bahia who uses the power of Candomble to fight the harsh conditions which, even post-abolition, the black population endured in Brazil, Besouro tells the fantastic and fantastical story of a young Afro-Brazilian man who became a symbol throughout all of Bahia for his bravery and loyalty, in defending the persecuted and oppressed.

João Daniel Tikhomiroff directed what is/was one of Brazil's biggest productions ever!

Huan-Chiu Ku who directed the fight sequences in films like Kill Bill and The Matrix, does the same here, as the film features spectacular stunt sequences, with a soundtrack that includes Gilberto Gil.

So, here's your chance to see it if you have not. Albeit horribly dubbed.

Watch the thrilling trailer below:

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