I found City of God a beautiful, dark film. Just one thing though: Woah- R18 for a reason! Lots of realistic bloody violence, drug use, swearing, and adult themes. It was well placed, however. Sometimes you expect it, and other times it catches you off guard. But it is the disturbing elements that also make the film. Not that watching such aggression is entertaining- but the story is based on the real situation of slum life in Brazil, of gangs, dealers vs police, people caught in the cross-fire, and THAT is showcased. In addition to the subject matter, the use of camera-action: hand held and panning scenes are really well used. The cinematography is stunning. The placement of narrator also works, and the humour used at times was slight, but very amusing. I also enjoyed how the colours of the film shifted from sixties to seventies, representing a change in perspective too - clever. I watched the Bonus disc - the features include a short doco on the life of a policeman, a dealer, and a citizen in Rio slums. That was eye-opening... in a OMG-I-didn't-know-it-was-so-bad kind of way. These sorts of stories need to be told. THIS is newsworthy... How can so many people live in poverty, and the police believe the only way to keep them "happy" is through repression? Woah. Anyway, City of God isn't for the feint-hearted, but it is beautiful, deep, insightful and newsworthy. 5 stars.
This is a disturbing tale of the endless cycle of poverty and violence in the slums of Rio. There is lots of shooting resulting in a high body count. The story cleverly interweaves the predicament of the slum's residents, however the central character is not all that engaging. Also the film-making style is too detached and matter-of-fact.
Apparently similar things happen in certain parts of brazil even to this day, hard to believe actually. Great characters, funny, shocking, interesting story. Really enjoyed it
Turned it off after half hour.
Waste of space. Don't bother.
Excellent movie! The film making style was very original and added to the impact of the story. If this is how some people are forced to exist, we are very lucky!
this film certainly opens your eyes, and to think this goes on today , better still its a tru story , i can cope with films that are true
Have you ever watched a movie and wished you hadn't? I've decided that I'd prefer to remain in ignorance about the slums and gangs in Rio. Unrelenting violence, hatred, blood lust ... and zero respect for life. And the tender age at which these attitudes are inherited! A deplorable loss of innocence. Quite disturbing.
A very powerful look into the lives of these slumdogs. Some great characters, heart breaking and terrifying all at once. Great performances from the mostly non- professional actors. Fairly confronting in showing the every day reality of violence in the streets. The last 90 seconds reveals the true horror of the piece and the cycles of violence. 4.5 stars
The film dealt with some truly unpleasant subjects which is the harsh reality of life in the poorer parts of Brazil. Brilliant, engrossing film.
I was unable to view this film as there was a problem with the disc. While the disc allowed the language to be set as English the language was not English and there were no subtitles.
turned off after 10,mins.
About 2 hours of gang warfare in the slums of Rio really doesn't have much going for it in terms of an interesting story. Another 20 minutes of the film is minor redemption with a slum kid getting a break. The movie is strangely presented in episodes and tries to be too clever. The hour-long documentary on the DVD shows the depressing reality of the drugs/guns/corruption impasse. The honesty of the police chief is remarkable.
Two boys growing up in a violent neighborhood of Rio de Janeiro take different paths: one becomes a photographer, the other a drug dealer. Very confronting
Not for the faint hearted as very graphic, but this doesn't distract from the film. I found quite engrossing.
I liked the way film is narrated, otherwise nothing great about this movie.
Really enjoyed it. Surprising as it comes from Brazil. It's excellently made, as powerful as GOMMORRA and as violent as SCARFACE. Didn't feel like it was a 2 hours movie so good it was. I don't give 5 stars very often but that one deserves it for the actors, the directing and the editing.
Fantastic story and superb cinematography. Certainly a classic in my book. The chracters are very beleivable and whilst there are some confronting scenes and storylines, ultimateley this film is rewarding in every aspect. Certainly worth your time and attention. A must see.
Powerful. And sad and scary to think how close this would have been to reality for many. Having also been to South American myself it was emotional as I have seen the slums. Nothing anywhere near this even in the worst part of Australia (there are terrible things here and conditions - watch the movie and tell me differently!).
(another five stars from me [they wouldn't change from four] but hey I'm picky and 90% of the movies in the world would get only a single star)
Incredible story of poverty, violence, police corruption and gang drug culture set in Brazil and the lawless enclave of "City of God". Children run around with guns and life is cheap. Based on true story, it follows the story of "Rocket", a boy enmeshed in the world through his hoodlum brother, neighbours and friends. His only hope of escape is education and his desire to become a photographer. Gritty film which portrays the violence of this world interspersed with some moments of bleak humour and social observation. Not for the fainthearted but a really good film nonetheless.
Memerizing, magnificent, depressing...watch it
Didn't like this one as the whole movie is in subtitles! Story is slow but watchable.
Every credit to the makers of this movie for deep understanding and excellent portrayal of various aspects of human emotions and motivations. The movie is all real- no absolute winners, no absolute losers, predicabilities mixed with unpredictabilties. Just great.
This is a film with a big reputation and its easy to see why. Highly confronting in its casual depiction of a wholly anarchic and violent society, the fact that is is based on a true story is chilling. Technically masterful, with very natural performances and a fast and addictive plot, it's not fun, but ultimately very satisfying.
Thought provoking and faintly depressing
Excellent movie - just very frightening that it's based in fact. Very confronting and disturbing that this stuff actually takes place.
Fantastic! Gritty, unexpectedly funny and well worth watching
WOW. and this is based on a real happening. What a brilliantly done movie. Makes you glad you live in a western country.
Shocking brilliant movie, a must see
Really good but really really sad. Very highly recommended. But warning...very violent and difficult to watch in some parts
A real condition of one of the most important cities in Brazil. Watch it.
One of the best films I have ever seen. The whole story is exciting and you can't stop watching it. A must watch if you like crime, action and gangsta movies.
A different world where violence is the key to survival and your demise. A story well told!
A good portrayal of life in the slums and the life of young street kids - more should have given of what is being done to eradicate the gangs and the Policbrutality
Not my cup of tea. Very sad, violent and disturbing movie.
iodn't enjoy this one at all. Poorly made although i thought the cast acted well.
Unlike David Stratton I find the use of 'hand held' cameras to make a movie more realistic. This is a great movie, real life.
Terrible, terrible movie. One of the worst I have ever seen. Why is such a gratiously violent sub titled movie rated so well?
Powerful, gripping & sad insight into a world that we know little about.
A powerful and ultimately moving film, supported by strong performances from its cast - both young and old. Gritty and unrelenting in its portrayal of poverty and violence in the Brazilian ghetto, it nevertheless provides a small ray of light and hope. While there may be little room for optimism about life in the ghetto, at least one of the characters finds a way out through the viewfinder of his camera. Violence in this movie is extreme - but never sensationalised or gratuitous. In this community, violence is a fact of life - even a highly pragmatic option, when faced with the reality of life in the ghetto. There is no sermonising or moralising in this movie, making its images and messages even more powerful.
A very disturbing, yet watchable film because of the sensitive and skillful direction of such awful subject matter of the lives of children in Rio de Janero.
It is raw and tragic. The documentary as special extra is also an added education for the plight and corruption of this society away from the normal imagery we have of the beautiful people on the beach and in the parades. This is the truth of the 2.5 million people who hang onto life on the hillsides of the City of God...
This is a great film, although I feel it lacks certain elements of character development with a few key characters which would enrich the viewing experience. Still very worthwhile to see if you can handle drug use and violence.
The movie itself is clever, moving and often (despite yourself) funny. The doco that goes with it is most certainly an eye-opener, from all sides!
It is excellent,Ifound it quite depressing,it must be known that the subject of the film is sad but the whole film is supurb in all the other technicalities and worth watching
Excellent film. Be sure to watch the documentary that is included as bonus material.
A sophisticated movie with some striking cinematographic effects. Avoids the risk of lapsing into the maudlin. Excellent performances all round.
This was awful and I turned it off.
Quite a good and engaging movie which gives an interesting insight into Brazilian slums
Excellent film, had heard great reviews and I wasn't let down.
Powerful well made movie. You are sucked right in to the world of this movie and feel empathy for all the characters. Brilliant.
Wow ! based on a true story......a movie that stays with you for weeks, watched it twice it was so powerful. Certainly not for the faint hearted as there is non stop violence from the slums of rio de janero, survival of the strongest and shows how "low we can get as a human race". The people are abandoned by all and find themselves in a hopeless plight, no value for life whatsoever they adapt and accept a cruel 'dog eat dog' existence. Cinematography is amazing, & the interviews with the actual criminals at the end of the film adds to the power of the movie and confirms its content. Subtitles do not detract as you are so absorb. Certainly only for a mature audience.
Interesting, even if there is a bit of a collision between style and subject. Pacy but confused argument.
Very sad and disturbing as a film.
Very explicit, but well worth watching.
Good movie, but 85% unrelenting bloodshed amongst doomed youth and 15% about the photographer. Unlike David Stratton I liked the camera work and thought it innovative and economical. The supporting documentary is equally interesting, with Rio police chief Helio Luz (what a name!!) giving us some food for thought about rich, poor and police.
A superb insight into the violent underbelly of one of the world's most glamourously portrayed cities
A very vivid portray of the underclass in third world countries. Rio and Sao Paulo are both very violent cities were the extremes clash and the fittest survive. A good story of survival.
Guns, drugs, money, violence, it is all there and it is for real.
Perhaps it is the manner in which this very violent story is told that is the most enthralling aspect of this movie. Flashbacks and flashforwards, unexpected twists and turns in this gritty film of a true story. Great acting and superb photography on top of a story which leaves you breathless. Not to be missed.