City of God

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +2

Content: -4

In this Brazilian film with English subtitles, Rocket (Alexandre Rodrigues) is a young man growing up in the slums of Rio de Janeiro, dubbed the City of God, who dreams of becoming a photographer. But this city has nothing to do with St. Augustines City of God. Rockets life and the lives of those around him are told through a series of short stories, which he narrates. Starting at an early age, the young men in the slum determine that their only way out is to get money. Since none of them desire to work for a living, they try to accumulate their wealth through robbery and drug dealing. As the boys vie for control of the drug business in the slum, many of them and their friends and family are killed in the escalating violence. Rocket finally gets his opportunity to take photographs for the local paper, but his subjects are the gangs and crime from which he is trying to escape.

This film is continual, extreme violence played out against the backdrop of drug dealing, including several scenes of drug use, both smoking marijuana and snorting cocaine. The inner workings of the drug lords operation are shown through assembly lines of people preparing drugs for sale and shipment. The drug runners arm themselves with small handguns to assault rifles, and the gangs give guns to young children to buy their loyalty. Several brutal, graphic murders are shown, including a gang initiation in which a young boy agonizes over which of two brothers he must shoot and kill to earn the respect of the gangs. A robbery of a house of prostitution includes several scenes of male and female frontal nudity and sexual intercourse. Due to the never-ending graphic violence, rough language, sexual content and drug abuse, Preview gives City of God a negative acceptability rating.

Preview Reviewer: Bob Nusser

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Many (50+) times Mild 5, moderate 45+

Obscene Language: Many (90+) times F-word 62, S-word 17, others

Profanity: One time Exclamatory (C. sake)

Violence: Continuous/Graphic severe (several people are shot, often at point blank range; man slaps son; man kicked in rear-end; man stabbed; woman is raped [implied]; cheating wife is hit with shovel and buried alive by husband; several shoot-outs between the gangs and between gangs and police)

Sex: Several times couples shown naked on bed in hotel rooms, woman performing oral sex on man, oral sex between older woman and young boy, implied intercourse with couple in bed together, man catches wife in bed with other man.

Nudity: Several/graphic womens breasts shown in hotel room, male and female rear ends shown, frontal nudity after man is forced to remove underwear in public, women dress in bikinis and low-cut tops.

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Many man talks about desire to lose his virginity, girl is referred to as only one in gang who screws, woman referred to as sluts, woman said to offer special favors in return for drugs.

Drugs: Constant Smoking marijuana, snorting cocaine, cigarette smoking and some drinking, packaging and buying/selling of drugs in many scenes.

Other: Man desires to escape slum by finding a better job, many characters determine that crime is the only way out of the slum, gang members recite Lords prayer before going on offensive to kill other gang, corrupt police sell guns to gangs, most characters have total lack of respect for authority.

Running Time: 133 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

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