Elite Squad: The Enemy Within (2011)



Critic Consensus: Elite Squad: The Enemy Within is a bleak, violent descent into the Brazilian underbelly, ripping into the favelas with unstoppable and kinetic force.

Movie Info

The sprawling slum that towers over Rio de Janeiro is one of the most dangerous places on Earth, and as the head of Rio's BOPE (Special Police Operations Battalion), Captain Nascimento (Wagner Moura) has seen his share of intense situations. When a BOPE mission to stop a jail riot ends in violence, Nascimento finds his job on the line--and BOPE accused of a massacre by human rights activists. But a public fed up with the violence and gangs that plague Rio loves it, and Nascimento finds himself … More

Rating: R
Genre: Drama, Action & Adventure, Art House & International
Directed By:
Written By: Rodrigo Pimentel, Bráulio Mantovani, José Padilha
In Theaters:
On DVD: Feb 14, 2012
Box Office: $0.1M
Variance Films - Official Site


as Captain Nascimento

as Fortunato

as Rosane

as Mathias

as Fábio

as Beirada

as Azevedo
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Elite Squad: The Enemy Within

Friend Ratings

No Friends? Inconceivable! Log in to see what your friends have to say.


Critic Reviews for Elite Squad: The Enemy Within

All Critics (42) | Top Critics (16)

The pace is quick, the violence is rough, and the visual style is documentary as Padilha hammers home his point: Someone is forever in the pocket of someone else as The System constantly adapts to protect itself.

Full Review… | January 4, 2012
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic

When this Enemy Within settles into key action sequences, such as a stunning nighttime ambush or a daytime battle against Fabio, it becomes wildly entertaining.

Full Review… | January 4, 2012
Top Critic

Throttles forward with remarkable aplomb and easily leaves the original in the dust.

Full Review… | December 8, 2011
Top Critic

Elite Squad is just urgent and complex enough to make it clear violence is more than a matter for academic debate.

Full Review… | December 2, 2011
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

A fast-paced, hard-hitting Brazilian police thriller.

Full Review… | December 2, 2011
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic

Jammed with cliches but completely engrossing.

Full Review… | December 1, 2011
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Elite Squad: The Enemy Within

Whereas it's predecessor was an unflinching street-level document of the elite "Special Police Operations Squad" of Rio de Janeiro, and the first-person turmoils of it's Captain Roberto Nascimento, "Elite Squad: The Enemy Within" is infinitely broader in scope. This film explores the facets of corruption from the ground level, all the way up to the hights of politics in an ambition, angry, and unforgettable way (while feeling just as personal as the first film). "Elite Squad: The Enemy Within" is not only better than "Elite Squad," it plays like and ranks with some of the best crime sagas out there.

Michael S

Super Reviewer

It`s The Wire meets The Departed. A masterpiece. An unforgettable and breathtaking action film, they dont get better than this. It`s a pure slam-bang knockout of an action movie. It packs an intense blow of story, characters, politics and realism into one explosive tour de force. A cripplingly dramatic and well-constructed flick. A stylish, heart-pounding, twist-filled and action-packed edge of your seat thriller that sets the screen ablaze. A powerful and electrifying movie. I loved this film. It`s angry, complex and very compelling all the way through. A real eye-opener that`s smart, fresh and utterly exhilarating. Wagner Moura gives an astonishing performance that deserves awards attention, he has never been better. A brilliant piece of work that stands with filmmakers like Coppola and Scorsese. It`s top-notch and truly superb. Bravo Director, Jose Padiha, this directors got talent and i hope to see more of his work in the future. An adrenaline-charged and tremendously entertaining thrill-ride that truly just rocks

Al S

Super Reviewer


Captain Nasciento is promoted to the Intelligence Agency and uses his BOPE units to clear the drug trade out of the city, unwittingly allowing the corrupt militia to fill the empty criminal power vacuum. Jose Padilha's sequel to the entertaining if morally dubious Elite Squad is a similar expose of the crime and corruption of modern day Rio de Janeiro, peppered with some brutal action sequences and coloured with nothing but various shades of morally ambiguous grey. Padilha's script is actually rather more nuanced than that of the first film, which tempers the fascistic overtones as Nasciento comes to find common ground with the lily-livered liberal Fraga when he realises that they both want the same thing; justice. It also attempts to address the corruption of the system beyond the streets showing the self serving politicians pulling the strings and their manipulation of the media. It's essentially a visceral tirade against institutional corruption and as such seems a little preachy, especially since the first person narrative makes it feel rather dry and detached. The action scenes are brilliantly executed however and the multi-layered story gives it a depth missing from the original film making for a quality action thriller with a political spin.

xGary Xx

Super Reviewer

Elite Squad: The Enemy Within Quotes

– Submitted by José A (3 years ago)
– Submitted by Claudio P (3 years ago)
– Submitted by Lucas G (3 years ago)
– Submitted by Vera F (3 years ago)

Discussion Forum

Discuss Elite Squad: The Enemy Within on our Movie forum!