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Cidade de Deus

  • 2002
  • R
  • 130min
  • 91%
  • 8.6 / 10

Set in the slums of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the movie follows the lives of two men over the course of several decades, as they grow up on the streets amongst drugs and violence. We see how their lives are deeply affected by the world around them, and how they follow vastly different paths based on their dreams and what the slums of Rio afford them. While one seeks to follow his dream of becoming a photographer, the other becomes caught up in the world of the drug trade, rising to high ranks in the local crime world. The movie is a gritty and uncompromising look at the dark side of Brazil and the realities of living in the favelas of Rio.

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City of God and the novel upon which it is based is partially inspired from real events and the very real and constant threat of crime and poverty in the favelas of Brazil. The film was made by local filmmakers about the organized crime of their country, and employing unknown local actors in the lead roles to further drive home the dedication to a realistic and gritty depiction of the events in the film. This depiction resonated with audiences and critics, with the movie earning numerous awards, including several Academy Awards nominations for directing, editing, and cinematography. The film is certainly one of the best-known films made in and about Brazil, its culture, and the unique problems its people face on a daily bases in its impoverished and crime-ridden urban areas.

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about the movie

City of God is a 2002 Brazillian crime drama directed by Fernando Meirelles and Katia Lund. The film was produced by Andrea Barata Ribeiro, Mauricio Andrade, and Hank Levine, and written by Braulio Mantovani, based on the 1997 novel of the same name by author Paulo Lins. The film stars Alexandre Rodrigues, Leandro Firmino da Hora, Douglas Silva, and Phellipe Haagensen. The film's production was handled by O2 Films, Hank Levine Film, and VideoFilms, with distribution by Miramax. It was made on a fairly low budget of just $3 million, earning over $30 during its theatrical run, and earning numerous critical accolades and awards across many awards shows that year.