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City Of God [2003] [DVD]

Alexandre Rodrigues , Matheus Nachtergaele , Fernando Meirelles , KŠtia Lund    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (130 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Actors: Alexandre Rodrigues, Matheus Nachtergaele, Leandro Firmino, Phellipe Haagensen, Douglas Silva
  • Directors: Fernando Meirelles, KŠtia Lund
  • Writers: BrŠulio Mantovani, Paulo Lins
  • Producers: Andrea Barata Ribeiro, Bel Berlinck, Daniel Filho, Donald Ranvaud
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: Portuguese
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Buena Vista
  • DVD Release Date: 7 July 2004
  • Run Time: 102 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (130 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 127,355 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



Like cinematic dynamite, City of God lights a fuse under its squalid Brazilian ghetto, and we're a captive audience to its violent explosion. The titular favela is home to a seething army of impoverished children who grow, over the film's ambitious 20-year time frame, into cut-throat killers, drug lords and feral survivors. In the vortex of this maelstrom is L'il Z (Leandro Firmino da Hora--like most of the cast, a non-professional actor), self-appointed king of the dealers, determined to eliminate all competition at the expense of his corrupted soul. With enough visual vitality and provocative substance to spark heated debate (and box-office gold) in Brazil, codirectors Fernando Meirelles and Kátia Lund tackle their subject head on, creating a portrait of youthful anarchy so appalling--and so authentically immediate--that City of God prompted reforms in socioeconomic policy. It's a bracing feat of stylistic audacity, borrowing from a dozen other films to form its own unique identity. You'll flinch, but you can't look away. --Jeff Shannon

Product Description

Australia released, PAL/Region 2.4 DVD: LANGUAGES: Portuguese ( Dolby Digital 5.1 ), English ( Subtitles ), ANAMORPHIC WIDESCREEN (1.85:1), SPECIAL FEATURES: Documentary, Interactive Menu, Scene Access, SYNOPSIS: Fernando Meirelles' City of God is a sweeping tale of how crime affects the poor population of Rio de Janeiro. Though the narrative skips around in time, the main focus is on Cabeleira who formed a gang called the Tender Trio. He and his best friend, Bene (Phelipe Haagensen), become crime lords over the course of a decade. When Bene is killed before he can retire, Little Ze attempts to take out his arch enemy, Sando Cenoura (Matheus Nachtergaele). But Sando and a young gangster named Manu form an alliance and begin a gang war with Little Ze. Amateur photographer Buscape (Alexandre Rodrigues) takes pictures of the brutal crime war, making their story famous. City of God was screened at the 2002 Cannes Film Festival.
SCREENED/AWARDED AT: BAFTA Awards, British Independent Film Awards, Camerimage Awards, Cannes Film Festival, Cartagena Film Festival, European Film Awards, Golden Globes, Oscar Academy Awards, Toronto International Film Festival, Vancouver International Film Festival, ...City Of God ( Cidade de Deus )

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars City of God - A masterpiece 31 July 2005
By Jan
I had wanted to see this movie for long time, and had heard about how good it was, and when I got the chance to watch it, I was blown away.
Set in the brutal City of God in the slums of Brazil, this is the story of how residents fight for their lives in this violent ghetto. It starts with the story of the Tender Trio who become legends in this slum, because of their stealing, but when "Lil Ze2 comes to town, people realize that they are just amateurs and brutal gang wars follow.
This is a very hard-hitting and violent film, and it contains a roller-coaster ride of emotions. You really care for some of the characters involved and truly hate others.
I strongly recommend this amazing film if you enjoy world cinema.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
By Anni
Recently, my venture to learn more about film and the history of Cinema has lead to world cinema and various other films that have glistening reviews. I decided to buy this DVD for many different reasons, mainly for personal satisfaction and to discuss it with other avid fans. My word was I impressed, not only is this one of the best movies I've ever seen, but has set a terrifying new scale for other films to beat, the acting is emotional and stunningly real despite the only actor being Carrot. The cinematography is perfect, there is absolutely nothing better than this in terms of realism. To finalise, a stunning movie that can be watched again and again which sums up modern World Cinema.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars masterpiece of cinema 20 April 2012
the greatest film of all time ,brilliantly shot ,fantastic story ,action ,drama ,heart wrenching ,gut busting gangster flick set in the slums of rio ,the acting by the street kids was truly wonderful ,the fact that most of the actors really were street kids and residents of the favelas before being chosen for the film is incredible given how good the acting is ,cannot recommend it highly enough
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29 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Astonishing 28 Dec 2006
By Kit
I was disappointed that this film is being labelled the new Goodfellas. This film is in a different league to Goodfellas or any other 'gangster' film. I understand that many of the Amercian or English mob movies usually end with the death of the gangsters but I have always regarded them as sensationalising organised crime and making the life of the gangster look fairly attractive to persons with certain dispositions.

City of God is I think more representative of real street crime between kids and men in the slums of Brazil, Nigeria, Somalia, or even some streets in the more developed world.

City of God explains that criminality and murder is not a choice, it is a way of life; the only means of survival. In films like Scarface or Goodfellas the life of a gangster provided the option for the greedy and evil.

City of God is far superior because it shows that for some war is life, and no matter how good a person may be circumstances make people bad. I was astonished by the direction in the film and the way the story developed. The scenes were extraordinary and frighetening. City of God is faultless and the ultimate cinema exposition of criminality.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hell on Earth 14 July 2005
By Mr. Terence Jones VINE VOICE
This is a very good film, in fact i would rate it 4 out of 5, It's about a slum in Rio de Janeiro called City of God.
It follows (primarily) the life of 2 boys Rocket and Li'l Dice (later to rename himself L'il Ze) from the late 60's to the early eighties (a period of about 14 years).
In the slums the only way to survive is to take menial low paid work, or become a hoodlum.
Both Rocket and Dice's older brothers are part of the terrible trio - notorious local hoodlums and robbers. Dice and Rocket are not friends though, merely acquainteneces in the same area
Rocket stays in school to study while L'il Dice joins his brother as a hood. We follow both as Rocket struggles
with relationships while Li'l Dice turns himself and his friend Bene (the coolest hood in the slums) into the most feared hoods.
L'il Ze (as he's now calling himself) decides to take over the local drug trade by killing off the dealers
and taking their territories. So he does and stops the robberies plaguing his area in the process, to further enhance his grip as "the boss"
Meanwhile Rocket dreams of being a photographer having the only camera amoung his group of friends. he starts work at a local
newspaper as an errand boy and works himself up. Chance brings them into contact later when Ze, desperate for
publicity to publicise his name in a war with another dealer gets Rocket to take his picture this catapults Ze to the limelight he desires and unwittingly gets Rocket his first real start as a photographer.
Naturally violence is never far away and the film is as much about how the very poor survive and the police corruption rife in Brazil and how this touches the lives of all good and bad.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars On "News From a Personal War" 12 Feb 2004
The film itself is a classic, obviously- but the DVD, empty of the usual extras like commentary, has a truly superb, hour long documentary on the brazillian favellas and their evolution into permanent war zones, using interviews from the perspectives of drug dealers, (the heavily armed and corrupt) police, and the residents. This makes it clear that the film does not exaggerate- in fact judging by some of the chilling interviews here it might have toned down some of the violence. The terrible conditions seem to produce psychopath after psychopath, and police and rival gangs are locked into continuous spirals of killing and revenge. This extra adds real moral weight to the film- the slums are maintained to keep the underclasses under control, and death is early and meaningless. It is a world which normal human emotions penetrate little if at all. Perhaps this is why the directors used a sensationalist style in the film. It seems to fit the excitement and pride the real gang members are taught to feel in killing; you are left with the feeling that the stories need to be told as they were/ are experienced.
Unexpected and revealing.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
Good film, it shows the real side of the Brazilian favelas
Published 1 month ago by 98morgano
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't miss out on fantastic films due subtitles
Film fan but find subtitles difficult? This is the film to practice on. After ten minutes you won't even realise you are reading. Don't miss out on fantastic films due subtitles.
Published 1 month ago by Jo Powell
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Daughter loves it
Published 1 month ago by m j ashmore
5.0 out of 5 stars Just brilliant. Buy it
It's a classic! Just brilliant. Buy it!
Published 1 month ago by Olly
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Good value
Published 2 months ago by gary
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply the best Brazilian move I've ever seen
This movie is worth your time and money. It's one of the best movies I've ever seen and it looks beautiful on Blu-Ray. Great story, great script, great acting and great camerawork. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Knķtur H. ”lafsson
5.0 out of 5 stars Great film. Well worth it
Great film. Well worth it
Published 2 months ago by Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars City Of God Blu'ray
This isn't IMDB or "" so I won't be talking about the film rating or the picture quality... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Sam Underhill
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best films ever made!
Just adding my personal thoughts. I first watched this film when I found it on film 4 when I was only about 16. Read more
Published 5 months ago by H.E.Cox
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my favourites
This is powerful, gripping and ultimately a raw, viewing entertainment. Some of the scenes are pretty shocking, but it all adds to the realism and making you care or hate the... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Jack D
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