El verdugo

 

The Executioner

José Luis is a young employee in a funeral parlour who meets an executioner named Amadeo when he goes to a prison to perform a service. Amadeo is about to retire. When José Luis takes Amadeo's briefcase containing his professional instruments that he had forgotten to his house, he meets his daughter Carmen, who nobody wants to marry because they don’t want to become one of Amadeo's relatives. The couple gets on well immediately, and José Luis is forced to marry Carmen when he is caught in an awkward situation by the old man.

An official board gives the old civil servant a house to live in with the newlyweds, who are expecting a baby. But when it is time for the old man to retire, they all have to leave the house, unless the newlywed inherits the sinister job from his father-in-law and becomes an executioner. Although he despises the idea and believes he is no good for the job, José Luis accepts it, thinking he will not have to carry out any executions because the death penalty is already becoming obsolete. However, one day he receives an order to go to Palma de Majorca, where he has to execute a prisoner. Hoping the desired pardon will arrive at the last minute and José Luis will not have to carry out his job, the family travels to the island enjoying their stay as if it were holidays. But the pardon does not arrive and, on the guardia civil’s (Spanish civil guard) requirement, the young executioner has to go to the prison, where he will be virtually dragged up the scaffold by a civil servant, together with the culprit who has to die.

Production year
1963

Release Date in Spain
1964

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