The film tells the story of a real person, who lived in Bahia, a Brazilian state. The facts that the film shows happened in 1924. Manoel Henrique Pereira was born in 1895. Capoeira fighters change their names upon graduation; the ceremony is called christening. Therefore, Manoel became Besouro de Mangangá (Aílton Carmo), which means Mangangá Beetle. The film starts with the murder of Master Alípio (Macalé), Besouro’s coach. Master Alípio was killed by bodyguards of Colonel Venâncio (Flávio Rocha), an officer of the extinct Brazilian National Guard. Since Besouro was in charge of protecting Master Alípio, capoeira fighters and other members of the black community deemed him responsible for the death of the old coach. Therefore, he was not allowed to take part of the coach’s funerals.