Campos Eliseos (1973)

| Documentary, Short
A short project about the rise and relevant fall of the Campos Eliseos (word coming from "Champs Elysée"), at first a traditional large neighborhood that attracted plenty of businessmen and... See full summary »


Ugo Giorgetti


Ugo Giorgetti




Credited cast:
Humberto Marçal Humberto Marçal ... Narrator
Joaquim Pereira da Costa Joaquim Pereira da Costa ... Himself


A short project about the rise and relevant fall of the Campos Eliseos (word coming from "Champs Elysée"), at first a traditional large neighborhood that attracted plenty of businessmen and important families yet later on, with the lack of prosperity and crisis, became one of the most undervalued and decadent places in São Paulo's downtown area, turning itself into a crowded place immersed in criminality, poverty and abandoned constructions. Written by Rodrigo Amaro

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Documentary | Short







Filming Locations:

São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil

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Rise and fall of Campos Eliseos
22 May 2019 | by Rodrigo_AmaroSee all my reviews

"Campos Elíseos" presents the rise and fall of one of the most important places in downtown São Paulo. It started as a cosmopolitan place in the early 20th century, merging a large place (currently it's divided in several parts ranging from four or more neighborhoods) composed by Italian immigrants or wealthy families and there were several of important locations such as this huge church located on Alameda Glete (still existing and very well conserved), big mansions and historical points. But as São Paulo's population started to grew with the inclusion of migrants from all different states from Brazil the place lost its charm and important to become a place where poverty, abandon, criminality and drugs became a main thing - by the 1970's it was known as Boca do Lixo ("Trash's Mouth") and marginality took over - well, many Brazilian B movies from the late 60's and early 70's where filmed there and it reflected how life was in those bars, streets, brothels and such.

That was then and this is now: a huge chunk of the Campos Elíseos is somewhat highly regarded, there are parts where there's development, fancy apartments and businesses though it still feels undervalued because the other side, there are slums and near the Luz train station has become one of the worst spots to be around: Cracolândia (Crackland) where hundreds of crack or other drug users are gathered in the surroundings of that train station and it's complete mayhem where one cannot walk along there at any hour because you're gonna get mugged or feel scared, fearing some possible threat. I used to work near there, taking a bus that crossed that place and it was a pitiful, frightening sight to see. And don't think for one second authorities and government can move one iota to move them out of there - when they did a couple of years ago, they gathered to a park near there and only caused more trouble with riots, bonfires and blocking streets. For a brief moment, there was a rehabilitation program from city hall to recover those addicts by giving them work and a shelter but few were the ones who accepted it.

For me seeing this film was an opportunity to glimpse a reality that despite being sadder than what Campos Elíseos really intended to be and was, it works as a nostalgic way to see São Paulo in a more organized fashion when criminality wasn't so rampant and it gives me a dreamy sensation that with investment and care things wouldn't become what it is today. Considering the addresses presented there I know that it isn't the whole place that got deteriorated, it's just a chunk; but São Paulo's idealist Champs Elysée (Campos Elíseos means that) never reached its full potential. One of the major points comes from a popular criminal from the place, a guy who knew everyone and everything about the place. He doesn't talk much about his own story (all rambling to me) but from a research I did, he was killed hit by a car in 1984 while trying to contain two friends who were fighting each other. Where did that happened? Right in those streets of Campos Elíseos. 8/10

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