Cidade de Deus Matt 21 Dec 2005

14 comments Latest by Peter Jacobson

Finally got around to seeing Cidade de Deus (City of God) this weekend and it was amazing. Director Fernando Meirelles works in a style that’s like a strange amalgam of Scorcese, Tarantino, PT Anderson, and Guy Ritchie but infused with South American energy and flavor. It’s visually stunning to watch and Roger Ebert’s review of the flick notes that a key component of Meirelles approach is moving fast: Size up the shot, get it, and move on.

Meirelles began as a director of TV commercials, which gave him a command of technique — and, he says, trained him to work quickly, to size up a shot and get it, and move on. Working with the cinematographer Cesar Charlone, he uses quick-cutting and a mobile, hand-held camera to tell his story with the haste and detail it deserves. Sometimes those devices can create a film that is merely busy, but “City of God” feels like sight itself, as we look here and then there, with danger or opportunity everywhere.

14 comments so far (Jump to latest)

DaleV 21 Dec 05

Guy Ritchie? Ummm.

Thanks for the review, tho . . sounds most excellent.

Danny Cohen 21 Dec 05

yeah, it is like a 100% 5-star movie. So amazing. So freakin’ amazing.

The tiniest things were not overlooked. Even the titles of the sections were done incredibly well.

harry 21 Dec 05

I consider this movie in the top 100 of all time. If I were to come up with my own top 10, I would most likely put this movie in it.

One of the most interesting aspects of the film (and one that of course lends itself to the authenticity of the film) is that non of the people in the film are “professional” actors, but instead are all kids from the exact area of brazil where the film was shot.

The production company went there 6 months before shooting starterd and opened a non-profit acting school called Nos Do Cinema (We in Cinema). Everyone from the cast came out of that school.

Chad 21 Dec 05

I just saw this film recently for the first time as well. It kicked my ass. It is raw, startling, unique and totally aspiring filmmaking.

JF 21 Dec 05

One of the best movies I’ve ever seen.

Ed Knittel 21 Dec 05

My wife loves this movie and I have to agree with her as well. Glad you got around to seeing it.

Humberto Oliveira 21 Dec 05

Yes, the film is fantastic, specially if you ara a brazilian and live in Rio de Janeiro like I do. It’s very interesting to see where the social chaos we face nowadays comes from.

Just a note: the director’s name is Fernando Meirelles and not Ferdinand Meirelles.

Edgardo 21 Dec 05

I really love this movie. I started to watch it pretty late at night thinking I would watch one half that day and the rest the other. I just couldn’t turned it off.

IMBD has a nice quote from the director saying that if he knew about the dangers of filming at the favela he probably wouldn’t do it.

Also, as a side note: Seu Jorge which played Knockout Ned had a pretty succesful album with the soundtrack to The Life Aquatic.

Mary-Ann Horley 21 Dec 05

Loved this film. The Constant Gardener is also directed Meirelles, and is perhaps a bit more mass market but also worth watching

Zé Pequeno 21 Dec 05

Esses gringos aí tão falando de mim? Arquitetura da informação é caralho porra!

sebadog 22 Dec 05

You may also like “Carandiru”, the best jail movie ever.

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