Death and the Compass (film)

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Death and the Compass
Theatrical release poster
Directed byAlex Cox
Written byAlex Cox
Based onDeath and the Compass
by Jorge Luis Borges
Produced by
CinematographyMiguel Garzón
Edited byCarlos Puente
Music byPray for Rain
Release date
  • August 5, 1996 (1996-08-05)
Running time
96 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$3,500,000 (estimated)[citation needed]

Death and the Compass is a 1996 American thriller film written and directed by Alex Cox, based on Jorge Luis Borges' 1942 short story of the same name. It stars Peter Boyle, Miguel Sandoval, and Christopher Eccleston. Mexican actress Zaide Silvia Gutiérrez also appears.[1]

The film was originally a 55-minute drama made for Spanish TV/BBC in 1992.[2] Producer Karl Braun found further money to expand the film into a feature, but the film was not completed for four years. It was filmed on location in Mexico City.

The soundtrack was composed by Dan Wool and Pray for Rain.


Home media release[edit]

The making of the soundtrack is discussed in a conversation between Cox and Wool on the DVD release.

This also includes a 1976 original film short titled Spiderweb, which is another interpretation of the same Borges short story. National Film School graduate Paul Miller made the 33 minute drama using actor Nigel Hawthorne in one of his first screen roles.


Death and the Compass holds an approval rating of 17% on review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes.[3]


  1. ^ Death and the Compass, retrieved March 17, 2023
  2. ^ Quail, Great (September 28, 2018). "Borges Film – Death and the Compass". Shipwreck Library. Retrieved March 17, 2023.
  3. ^ "Death and the Compass - Rotten Tomatoes". Retrieved March 17, 2023.

External links[edit]