Sight and Sound - 09/01/2008
"In this chilling and, by all accounts, accurately researched world, no one is innocent....Padihla adeptly arranges his numerous characters and plot strands..."
Empire - 09/01/2008 3 stars out of 5 -- "[T]his is a frantic depiction of police brutality in the slums of Rio de Janeiro....Exhaustively researched, ELITE SQUAD picked up the Golden Bear at Berlin..."
Total Film - 02/01/2009 3 stars out of 5 -- "ELITE SQUAD detachedly documents the unwinnable war between the slumlords and the state."
One of the most notorious releases in the history of Brazilian cinema, Jose Padilha's ELITE SQUAD exposes the rampant corruption plaguing Rio de Janeiro from a policeman's point of view. The only problem is that, in Rio, the police are as corrupt as the criminals themselves, creating a ferociously violent atmosphere. Even the BOPE squad, an elite police force called in when the regular units are out of their league, resort to tactics that border on fascist. The film's narrator, Captain Nascimento (Wagner Moura), is increasingly tormented by the high-pressure situations he finds himself in on a daily basis--the city's favelas are like unmonitored war zones--and he yearns for the day when he can retire and enjoy a normal life with his pregnant wife. But he won't turn in his papers until he's able to find a suitable replacement. Two of the squad's latest recruits, Matias (Andre Ramiro) and Neto (Caio Junquiera), childhood friends with different perspectives on the corruption they encounter, might just do the trick. Nascimento tests their mettle once and for all when they are ordered to secure one of the region's most dangerous favelas. Padilha brings a documentary-like realism to ELITE SQUAD, which is as assaulting an experience as a movie can get (his first film, the riveting BUS-174, was, in fact, a documentary). Based on the book TROPA DE ELITE by Luiz Eduardo Soares, Andre Batista, and co-screenwriter Rodrigo Pimentel, Padilha's controversial glimpse into Rio's nightmarish criminal world will challenge and disturb viewers.
Based On A Novel |
Theatrical Release |
True Story |
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