City of God

Title: City of God
Original title:
Cidade de Deus
Directed by: Fernando Meirelles, Kátia Lund
Written by:
Paulo Lins, Bráulio Mantovani
Year: 2002

Watching preparations for a delicious meal, a chicken manages to free itself from its tethers, starting to run and hop for all its worth through the dusty streets of Rio de Janeiro. Rocket and his friends immediately chase after the chicken, following it through the alleys of the slum area called the City of God. Suddenly, he rounds a corner and finds himself caught in the middle of, on the one hand, gangsters he has reason to believe want to kill him, and, on the other hand, a heavily armed police force tired of the continuous violence in the area.

Through a patchwork of various story lines, this film sets out to explain how things arrived at this point. The narration is a masterpiece of chronologically separate stories, sometimes with different characters, but always wonderfully adding to the bigger picture. The story is set in the harsh reality of the slums of Rio de Janeiro, where two children grow up with their older felon brothers as their only role models. However, they grow up to become wildly different characters, one a photographer, the other a gangster boss, even though both their life stories continue to intertwine through the film.

To state it more plainly, this film is good, mostly because of the story and the directing (I would have given it five snails if I only were concerned with these factors). It’s a film that depicts what I imagine still is a big problem in most of the really big cities of the world, and it does it in a no-nonsense fashion worthy of praise. It’s also worthy my recommendation: See it whenever you have the opportunity!

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  1. Martin Ackerfors’s avatar

    Oj, jag var bergsäker på att du redan recenserat den här, men jag kanske drömt det. Nåväl, jag har också recenserat den och det verkar mycket riktigt som vi är överens.

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  2. Olle Linge’s avatar

    Heh, nej, jag såg den ju två dagar innan jag recenserade den eller något sådant. :) Mjo, film verkar vi hålla med varandra om väldigt ofta, böcker också förstås, men inte riktigt i samma utsträckning?

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