If you've liked City of God, you have to see the new brazilian movie Elite Squad (http://imdb.com/title/tt0861739/)
My brother praised it to us, saying it was so good; people had bought the pirate DVDs in record rates even before the original movie was released on the cinemas. Best thing yet, was they still went to the cinema to watch the movie anyway, breaking new records!
This is a piece of great-almost-prefect movie. This humble blogger of yours always have something wrong to say about almost every movie she watches, but woah! - not this time.
It is a good feeling when you see someone trying to shout to the world what is going wrong.
Someone trying to shout, to provoke you, to shake you out of the normal inert ways we get used to, trying to play blind to so many things going wrong with humanity.
The story is basically about good cops against bad cops. Of course there'll be tension, and fight and violence. Don't forget, to be a movie about policemen, you gotta have the criminals.
I mostly liked the movie because it shows what happens when you get honest good-hearted people around those who are dirty and corrupt, the weak people who ended up giving up and taking the easy way to fortune and supposed success. But more than that, you see how easy it is for them to start thinking there is no other way than to give in, to become part of the system, to be enticed. Sometimes, better most of the times, one cannot see other way out than go to the path of corruption and bad ways.
And I am pretty sure politics in Brazil are the same, Either you're in for the dirty, or don't get involved at all. Having close people to me involved with that, it is hard for me to just swallow every little bit of things they do knowing it is wrong, the phrase 'if it is not me, it will be someone else' comes to mouth more than once. The occasional charity they do maybe make them sleep comfortably at night. And I truly believe this behaviour is what makes Brazil, a country which does have everything to be a great nation, stay behind.
But yes, I was talking about the movie… It is about the Elite Police Squad created to take thing seriously into they hands in Rio de Janeiro. As they say in the movie, when they get involved is to kill and not be killed.
Unfortunately, by what I can understand, people in Brazil misread the movie. They've made the guys on BOPE (the squad) heroes, because they killed and tortured in name of justice. They should not be praised because of that. That is wrong. It is to use the Salomon laws of an eye for eye and how do you prove yourself better than someone who does the same thing to you and you say is wrong? (same plot ad THE KINGDOM - another brilliant movie by the way).
They should be praised because they seem not to be corrupt, and because they did the job they took in hands, A mission given is a mission accomplished. No matter what.
We can't have the illusion of believing everything they tell us, I very much doubt they are oh so clean like in this movie.
No one and nothing is never 100% perfect or clean. I do believe majority of BOPE is clean, and I believe that's what people want to see.
Brazilian people lack care. From police, hospitals, schools, government. To see BOPE working their backsides off to protect what is right from wrong is a rush we usually don't feel.
The movie is great because it shows the two, three, four sides of the same story. It makes it totally believable, convincing, and intriguing. It gives people hope that in the middle of so many things going wrong, there is something good happening. The acting is out of this world, the directing had a major breakthrough.
There is no stereotype at all. There are good people turning bad and bad turning good. You gotta love when that happens in the movies.
The movie is a piece of great cinema because the script is well formed. The story is well told.
Some journalists said the movie is fascist because police kills criminals.
It goes beyond that in my opinion. The movie gives the hero role back where it belongs. Not in the hands of traffic gangs which give schools, hospitals and food to favela families an assume the government role in society. But to the police, to honest guys who love and believe in what they do. If killing and torture is part of it, it is a very bad, sad day for humankind, but it'd be naïve to think with sweet talk and imprisonment you'd get anything from boys who turn to be men who are more like animals.
Again, I don't believe in killing criminals. I believe in giving kids a chance in life. An equal chance to everyone. So they can make a choice. It is easy for medium/high/higher/sky-high classes to judge them and say they should all die. It is not that easy. Some boys will ever know life as it is seen from above alright. Bad thing it is above a morro*, looking down for policemen coming to get you.
The movie shows exactly that. In a stunning competent and truthfully way.
At least that is what I'd like to believe. And I bet the whole Brazilian nation would like as well.