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Ganja & Hess
Directed by Bill Gunn • 1973 • United States
Starring Duane Jones, Marlene Clark, Bill Gunn
Straining the conventions of blaxploitation and horror through a singular avant-garde sensibility, Bill Gunn’s revolutionary independent landmark GANJA & HESS is a highly stylized and utterly original treatise on sex, religion, and African American identity. NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD’s Duane Jones stars as anthropologist Hess Green, who is stabbed with an ancient ceremonial dagger by his unstable assistant (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.