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Royalty's not to be trusted.
~ One of Aguirre's English speaking lines towards Joachim.
Lope de Aguirre is one of the two main antagonists (alongside Prince Joachim) of Disney's live action film, Jungle Cruise. He was a Spanish conquistador and Frank Wolf's arch-nemesis and former friend/brother-in-arms.
He was portrayed by Édgar Ramírez, who also played Paz in The Bourne Ultimatum, Ares in Wrath of Titans, and Bodhi in Point Break.
Agurre met Frank after his father passed away. They became like brothers and worked together on a map that lead to the Tree of Life.
In 1556, Agurre's daughter had fallen sick, so he went on an expedition with Frank to a deep jungle to find the Tears of the Moon so that he could heal his daughter from her sickness. A while after he and his crewmates went into the jungle, each of them started getting fevers and sicknesses, with one of them dying from snake venom. He too, had fallen ill and thought of his failure to find the Tears and save his daughter.
The Guardians of the jungle found them and used some of the Tears from the tree to revive him and his crew and nurse them all back to health. With him being alive and well again, he was closer to finding the petals of the tree to heal his daughter. For a time, Aguirre was happy, due to being so close to claiming the Tears, and would even have fun the Guardians children.
Overtime, he became impatient and begged for the Chief of the tribe to give them the Arrowhead, which could lead him to the Tears of the Moon. However, when the Chief refused to give it to him and find the tree, Aguirre kills him and many of the tribesmen in the process of taking the Arrowhead more forcefully before Frank tries to stop him.
After he seemingly kills Frank, The Chief used his last words to curse Aguirre and his crew to remain in the jungle forever and never leave sight of the river, or the jungle would take them back to it. Sometime afterwards, Aguirre had fought Frank for his betrayal of his crew. The fight went on for a long time until Frank put an end to it by trapping him and his crew in a dark cave where the Jungle petrified them for 300 years.
He remained in the cave, encased within stone and dried up without any of the river water until Prince Joachim freed them in exchange for finding the Arrowhead and the Tears of the Moon. After being freed by Joachim with explosives detonating the cave and allowing the river water to flow within, many different creatures such as snakes and wasps covered the bodies of Aguirre and his men, turning them into Monsters due to the curse.
Watching from a branch as a snake, he sees Frank along with Lily and MacGregor Houghton, drifting off deeper in the jungle to another native tribe similar to the ones that cursed Aguirre and his crew. Aguirre follows them and ends up attacking all the tribe's men again.
They go after Lily, who has escaped from them and has the Arrowhead, but as soon as they caught up to her, the jungle pulls them back towards the river due to the curse that was placed on them long ago. They come back and become their creature forms, informing Joachim of the location of the Arrowhead and where Frank and Lily were heading to.
Joachim captures MacGregor and catches up to Frank and Lily, and forces them to find the temple where the tree is being held. As soon as Lily and Frank find the tree and bloom all of it's petals, the moon sets way too soon as the blossoming petals begin disintegrating. Lily plucks one of the petals and Joachim tries to take it from her.
As Joachim failed to get the petal, Aguirre, having felt betrayed by him since he didn't inform them where the tree was like he promised, betrays him in turn and decided to go after the petal for himself. His crew attacks Frank and the others, that is until Frank crashes into the wall and causes the river's water within the temple to be emptied out, allowing the vines around it to surround Aguirre and his men along with Frank. While Frank soon receives the tears of the moon, freeing him from the curse, Aguirre and his crew are once again petrified within stone.
Prior to be cursed, Aguirre was determined to heal his daughter, demonstrating a strong bond he had with his family. He also at one point shared a similar bond with Frank. Aguirre was initially peaceful with the Guardians who saved him and his crew, and displayed a gentle side when he would play with their children. However, Aguirre would not allow anything get in the way of his quest to claim the Tears of the Moon and resorted to violence when the Chief of the Guardians refused to let him have them.
Upon being betrayed by Frank and cursed to never to leave the jungle, Aguirre apparently broke of all positive relations he had with his former brother in arms and would seek to punish him for thwarting his efforts to heal his daughter. This resentment and desire for vengeance appeared to only grow as time passed, even more so when Frank went on to trap Aguirre and his crew in cave, turning them to stone for over 300 years.
Powers and Abilities
Immortality - Due to the curse placed upon him by the Chief of the Guardians, Aguirre is immortal, remaining alive for hundreds of years and could not ever be killed. However, the curse also prevented Aguirre from leaving sight of the jungles' river. Anytime Aguirre left sight of the river, vines would grab him and forcibly drag him back. If the jungle could not take Aguirre back to the river, the vines would restrain him and he would quickly turn to stone.
Snake Manipulation - Due to being stone for over 300 hundred years thanks to the curse, Aguirre body had been ravaged by the jungle. Upon being revived, Aguirre became a monster that was made out of snakes. Aguirre could control the snakes that comprised his body, wield their venom, and see through their eyes.
Throughout the whole movie, Aguirre mostly spoke in Spanish and only spoke English a few times at the end of the movie.
In a complete contrast to the film Aguirre's goal of trying to save his daughter's life, the real Lope de Aguirre ended up killing his daughter Elvira to spare her from tortuous treatment immediately before he was captured and executed for his treasonous actions against the Spanish crown in 1561.
Despite his limited amount of screen time, he shared the role with Joachim as he was proven to be more dangerous and responsible for the curse placed on both himself and Frank. Upon Joachim’s death, Aguirre became the final antagonist.