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City of God (2002)
"Cidade de Deus" (original title)

 -  Crime | Drama  -  30 August 2002 (Brazil)
8.7
Your rating:
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Ratings: 8.7/10 from 450,371 users   Metascore: 79/100
Reviews: 705 user | 205 critic | 33 from Metacritic.com

Two boys growing up in a violent neighborhood of Rio de Janeiro take different paths: one becomes a photographer, the other a drug dealer.

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)
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Title: City of God (2002)

City of God (2002) on IMDb 8.7/10

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Top 250 #22 | Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 65 wins & 28 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Leandro Firmino ...
Zé Pequeno - Li'l Zé (as Leandro Firmino da Hora)
Phellipe Haagensen ...
Douglas Silva ...
Jonathan Haagensen ...
Matheus Nachtergaele ...
...
Mané Galinha - Knockout Ned
Jefechander Suplino ...
Alicate - Clipper
...
Emerson Gomes ...
Edson Oliveira ...
Michel de Souza ...
Bené Criança - Young Benny (as Michel De Souza Gomes)
Roberta Rodrigues ...
Luis Otávio ...
Maurício Marques ...
Cabeção - Melonhead
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Storyline

Brazil, 1960's, City of God. The Tender Trio robs motels and gas trucks. Younger kids watch and learn well...too well. 1970's: Li'l Zé has prospered very well and owns the city. He causes violence and fear as he wipes out rival gangs without mercy. His best friend Bené is the only one to keep him on the good side of sanity. Rocket has watched these two gain power for years, and he wants no part of it. Yet he keeps getting swept up in the madness. All he wants to do is take pictures. 1980's: Things are out of control between the last two remaining gangs...will it ever end? Welcome to the City of God. Written by Jeff Mellinger <jeffmellinger@astound.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

If you run, the beast will get you. If you stay, the beast will eat you See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong brutal violence, sexuality, drug content and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

30 August 2002 (Brazil)  »

Also Known As:

City of God  »

Box Office

Budget:

$3,300,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$21,728 (South Africa) (5 September 2003)

Gross:

$7,563,397 (USA) (18 June 2004)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

|

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Fernando Meirelles wanted the cast to be made of people who had never acted before, and professional actors who were not widely known. One such actor was Matheus Nachtergaele whom Meirelles had seen in a play. But while Meirelles was working on the script, Nachtergaele suddenly became a huge star in Brazil after starring in the hit film A Dog's Will (2000). Meirelles was a little disappointed at first but Nachtergaele promised him that he would disappear into the role of Sandro Cenoura so completely that his stardom would not distract from the film. Nachtergaele moved to the real Cidade de Deus where most of the cast lived and lived there for three months to prepare for the role. See more »

Goofs

When Bené throws Neguinho out (after he, Neguinho, has killed his girl friend) the amount of blood on Bené's T-shirt changes See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Zé Pequeno: Whoa, the chicken ran away. Get that chicken, dude!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The closing credits shows pictures of the main actors, their name, their character's name and pictures of the real life characters (for the ones based on existing people). See more »

Connections

References Goodfellas (1990) See more »

Soundtracks

So Very Hard to Go
Written by Emilio Castillo / Stephen M. Coppock
Performed by Tower of Power
Bob-a-Lew Music / Arika Music
Courtesy of Warner Bros. Records Inc.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

One of my top 10
26 November 2004 | by (Dallas, TX) – See all my reviews

I have made an effort to watch all the movies in IMDb's top 100 rated list. As of now, I'm looking for a place where the DVD for Sunset Blvd. is (currently at #30). But this movie is one of the movies I've seen that's on the list. And I find it an amazing film (currently #5 on my top 10 list). What I enjoy about this film is the visual look of the film, but also the way the director puts you in the story. At the end of the film you have become friends with just about everyone in the film, even though some of the characters are very despicable people. The violence hits you in the chest like a load of bricks sometimes, especially when you recognize that many of the kids involved in the violence are right around 10 or 11, but you also realize that this reflects the culture of the slum these kids live in.

Gangster films always seem to make for good dramas (e.g. the Godfather, Goodfellas), where the culture of evil almost always triumphs as the dominant character. This film is no different, but it shows the life of children in places where bribery and corruption reigns supreme. It also shows the bravery of many of these people when even the government won't stick up for them.

If you're thinking of starting to watch some foreign language films, this is a good place to start. It is a classic IMO among films made in languages besides English. I did find that the subtitles in this film were done rather poorly (they displayed on my DVD player at the wrong times and it took a few plays to figure out who was saying what.) But I think the film itself is a truly great film.


201 of 277 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Why is this at 8.8? roggan79
City of God is bad for Brazil! kornish-callum-1-284358
5 movies you hate but you wish you liked hafstadelic
Other movies like City of God? shan-rajeev
Question about the ending Frollo
Why City of God isn't great chris_topher1992
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