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Cidade de Deus (City of God) Reviews

Page 1 of 8
Rob Humanick
Projection Booth

The visceral and artistic excitement remains surface-bound.

Full Review Source: Projection Booth | Original Score: C

November 12, 2008
Jeremy Heilman
MovieMartyr.com

The direction is often inspired and sure-handed, even if it's sometimes unfocused or overambitious.

Full Review Source: MovieMartyr.com | Original Score: 2.5/4

August 22, 2002
Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

I came out of the theater feeling lucky to be alive.

Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews | Original Score: C+

March 19, 2003
Jan Stuart
Newsday
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Finally more numbing than emotionally shattering.

Full Review Source: Newsday | Original Score: 2.5/4

January 17, 2003
Wesley Morris
Boston Globe
Top Critic IconTop Critic

There's something distasteful in the rote way this film introduces us to two dozen hapless, heartless kids and doesn't care enough to make us feel for them.

Full Review Source: Boston Globe | Original Score: 2/4

January 24, 2003
J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

I came away from this film impressed by its narrative control but unmoved by anything it had to say.

Full Review Source: Chicago Reader

November 8, 2011

Incredible editing, but leaves an awful taste in my mouth - and I am totally desensitized to violence!

Full Review | Original Score: 1/5

March 6, 2003
Jean Lowerison
San Diego Metropolitan

Meirelles' message is important, but the telling quickly becomes monotonous.

Full Review Source: San Diego Metropolitan

February 15, 2003
Elbert Ventura
PopMatters

Meirelles plays to the crowd, plays everything for effect, which wouldn't necessarily be a problem if the subject didn't deserve greater intellectual seriousness.

Full Review Source: PopMatters

January 6, 2004
Steve Rhodes
Internet Reviews

A well-made but pointless picture, it is a non-stop orgy of senseless violence, as teens and preteens slaughter each other like animals.

Full Review Source: Internet Reviews | Original Score: 2/4

January 20, 2003
David Sterritt
Christian Science Monitor

The film is as slick as any Hollywood thriller ... that dilute the impact of what might have been an indelible cautionary tale.

Full Review Source: Christian Science Monitor | Original Score: 2/4

January 17, 2003
Peter Rainer
New York Magazine
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The distinction between the depiction of violence and its exploitation is paper-thin.

Full Review Source: New York Magazine

January 16, 2003
Walter Chaw
Film Freak Central

The question of the picture isn't what to do with the City of God, but really why do anything when such cool movies can be made from its suffering.

Full Review Source: Film Freak Central | Original Score: 2/4

March 13, 2003
Peter Keough
Boston Phoenix

The horrific images of children shooting children don't sit well with a tone of jaded irony, and the grinding nightmare of poverty and crime resists Cidade de Deus's playful generic conventions.

Full Review Source: Boston Phoenix

May 17, 2003
Louis Proyect
rec.arts.movies.reviews

A Brazilian "Scarface"

Full Review Source: rec.arts.movies.reviews

July 23, 2004
Koki Mourao
Hollywood.com

With few exceptions, real slum kids and actors from local amateur drama clubs were cast in City of God, and the result is truly believable characters and a gritty, realistic film.

Full Review Source: Hollywood.com | Original Score: 5/5

February 17, 2003
Josh Bell
Las Vegas Weekly

For all their straddling of the line between realism and exploitation, entertainment and education, it's entirely possible that Meirelles and Lund render that line invisible.

| Original Score: 4/5

September 6, 2003
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Hard to watch but even harder to tear your eyes away from.

| Original Score: 5/5

March 20, 2003
Steven Snyder
Zertinet Movies

"City of God" is a movie that, for the lack of a better term, incites us. It elicits a response. It pounds away at us until we break...

Full Review Source: Zertinet Movies | Original Score: 4/4

March 17, 2004
Philip Martin
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

It is certainly one of the best movies of the year; it may even be as good as Meirelles imagined it could be.

Full Review | Original Score: A

April 18, 2003

Sight and Sound
June 18, 2012
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