Ganja & Hess

Flirting with the conventions of blaxploitation and horror, Bill Gunn’s revolutionary independent film Ganja & Hess is a highly stylized and utterly original... Read more

Ganja & Hess

Directed by Bill Gunn

Year: 1973
Running Time: 113
Color Type: Color
Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
Country: U.S.
Language: English
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Ganja & Hess

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

Writer Bill Gunn
Produced by Chiz Schults
Directed by Bill Gunn

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.

Later recut and released in an inferior version, this edition represents the original release, restored by The Museum of Modern Art with support from The Film Foundation, and mastered in HD from a 35mm negative.


"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."


  • Official Selection Cannes Film Festival

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Venue City Date
Alamo Drafthouse Brooklyn Brooklyn 1540872000October 30, 2018
American Cinematheque - Egyptian Theatre Los Angeles 1540785600October 29, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse, Cedars Dallas 1540267200October 23, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse Denton Denton 1540267200October 23, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse Las Colinas Irving 1540267200October 23, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse Lake Highlands Dallas 1540180800October 22, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse Corpus Christi Corpus Christi 1539662400October 16, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse Laredo Laredo 1539662400October 16, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse Marketplace New Braunfels 1539662400October 16, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse Park North San Antonio 1539662400October 16, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse Sloans Lake Denver 1539576000October 15, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse Woodbury Woodbury 1539576000October 15, 2018
Alamo Ritz Austin 1539403200October 13, 2018
Art Theatre Champaign 1539316800October 12, 2018
Amherst Cinema Amherst 1539316800October 12, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse Montecillo El Paso 1539316800October 12, 2018
The Royal Toronto 1539230400October 11, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse Charlottesville Charlottesville 1539230400October 11, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse Ashburn Ashburn 1539144000October 10, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse New Mission San Francisco 1539057600October 9, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse Lubbock Lubbock 1539057600October 9, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse LaCenterra Katy 1538884800October 7, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse Yonkers Yonkers 1538539200October 3, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse Richardson Richardson 1538366400October 1, 2018
Coolidge Corner Theatre Brookline 1536379200September 8, 2018
Sie Film Center Denver 1534478400August 17 - August 23, 2018
Northwest Film Center Portland 1533960000August 11, 2018
Syndicated Brooklyn 1533873600August 10 - August 11, 2018
BAM Rose Cinemas Brooklyn 1533268800August 3 - August 9, 2018
SF MoMA San Francisco 1532664000July 27, 2018
Film Scene Iowa City 1531281600July 11, 2018
Alamo Drafthouse Raleigh Raleigh 1529985600June 26, 2018
Gene Siskel Film Center Chicago 15296400006/22, 6/26
Belcourt Theatre Nashville 1529380800June 19 - June 21, 2018
Mayfair Ottawa 15292944006/18, 6/20
Parkway Theatre Baltimore 1529035200June 15, 2018
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston Boston 1528862400June 13, 2018
Ragtag Cinema Columbia 1528430400June 8 - June 14, 2018
Winnipeg Film Group Winnipeg 1528344000June 7, 2018
Cleveland Cinematheque Cleveland 1528344000June 7 - June 8, 2018
Metrograph New York 1527652800May 30 - June 21, 2018

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