Pixote: A Lei do Mais Fraco (Pixote) (Pixote, the Law of the Weakest) Reviews

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Super Reviewer
April 27, 2009
A not so pleasant peek into the slums of latin america. Few films achieve such heartwrenching misery and crudeness. No MTV videoclip style of cinematography and editing, just rough reality and real poor kids making a few bucks while pouring their hearts and minds in front of a camera.
Super Reviewer
½ May 7, 2011
The cold reality of homeless children, that do everything to survive in a cruel brazilian society. A shocking film, a social critic cinematographic with great actors. Better that Fernando Meirelles's City of God. Fernando Ramos da Silva (1967-1987) and Jorge Juliano made a wonderful job, just like Babenco and the another actors.
Super Reviewer
June 1, 2007
unlike City of God, this is the movie about Brazilian street kids that has unflinching sensitivity toward its characters no matter how horrible their lives become. COG quickly turns the kids into material for an MTV-hyper Goodfellas
½ August 9, 2010
Was ok, watched it based on other peoples reviews. I kinda skipped through parts of it after an hour, You knew the ending based on the plot events pretty quick in the show.
½ January 7, 2010
Should have won Academy Award for Best Foreign Film in 1982, but wasn't eligible because of its release date.
January 16, 2009
March 20, 2008
pixote is clearly one of well-made documentaries about juveniles in slump area in Sao Paolo, Brazil. A story about a young boy named Pixote who at 19 was brutally murdered by corrupted police. The film you can think about how fortunate you are living in a everything-is-available community.
½ October 13, 2014
"Pixote: A Lei do Mais Fraco" merece o seu estatuto de filme basilar no cinema brasileiro com um fundamento de retrato social, mas a sua narrativa à deriva (tal como o próprio protagonista Pixote) deixa-nos algo alineados em alguns momentos das suas duas horas de duração. A abordagem semi-documental de Hector Babenco é contudo muito mais sensível e individualizada do que a dos maiores dos realizadores, que muitas vezes tratam a delinquência de menores como um fenómeno estatístico. Toda a direcção de actores jovens é também totalmente convincente.
June 1, 2014
One of the most raw films Ive ever seen, life for the children of Brazilian slums, in many ways this movie hits harder than City of God. The real life story of the child actor is a heart breaking tragedy. Un pelicula impactante sobre la pobresa de niños en Brasil, algo que se queda en tu memoria. La historia real del protagonista es una tragedia
February 1, 2014
Heart-breakingly wonderful.
November 30, 2010
The most horrific way to spend your time in a cinema, but also an immensely powerful, unflinching study of crime and its influence on youth.
½ May 28, 2012
Pretty shocking and alarming documentary of a young boy (Fernando Ramos De Silva) who is abandoned by his parents and ends up in a really rough juvenile detention centre. Within this compound, he strives to get out in which those running the facility torture and even kill his young prison mates if they step out of line in any sort. Befriending obviously the wrong people, he and several others succeed at escaping the centre, only getting into the life of drugs, prostitution, and sadly, murder. Painful and effective examination of kid with no emotions whose future has little to no hope. Seriously graphic at times, especially several of the sequences in which the kid ends killing and or seriously hurting others within the film. This film really works, but word of caution: it may be too much for some people.
Super Reviewer
½ May 7, 2011
The cold reality of homeless children, that do everything to survive in a cruel brazilian society. A shocking film, a social critic cinematographic with great actors. Better that Fernando Meirelles's City of God. Fernando Ramos da Silva (1967-1987) and Jorge Juliano made a wonderful job, just like Babenco and the another actors.
May 3, 2010
3. Pixote, A Lei do Mais Franco: This 1981 drama directed by Hector Babenco takes real children from the favela's of Sao Paulo and places them in the true world via cinematic adaptation, depicting what they will become as they grow up, an inescapable fate. A truly powerful piece of cinema, that though lives up to Brazil's one-story of the repressed under-class and exclusion has such depth and dexterity in dealing and developing an underground world of corruption, deceit and explicit murder that the film would provoke an emotional reaction out of the most cold hearted person. What gives Pixote a sense of realism and plausibility is its sense of reality. Unlike the over stylised and cheap mainstream cop-out of social class 'Slumdog Millionaire' a film, that caters for cinematic spectacle over true depth and grit that is displayed here. The production of such a fable is so unprescedented at the time (1980's Brazilian cinema was bordering on zero production due to the tv's influence and the Brazilian love of soap operas) but the reception to this tale and the subsequent events that followed 10yr old actor Fernando in his failure to escape the slums in real life all adds up to the this being one of the most accurate presentations of life in Favela ever made. In life, Fernando's character 'Pixote' shone like a becon of hope to those millions of homeless children living the life of crime, and his death in real life in his home at 19 (due to gangs and drugs, shot by the police in mysterious circumstances) leaves a permenant imprint and reminder of the brutality and opportunities presented to the poor. Such a heavy message is displayed here in unflinching child murders, nudity, rape amongst other violence. While seems to have completely disregarded women in the film (Deborah is stabbed after cheating the kids and she also a prostitute, not the most be representation for women. Sueli also is the mad/bad woman rejecting motherhood in a truly shocking sequence and plays the role of seductress) there is a great focus on sexuality and socialisation within the picture which adds to the cultural feel and overall variety and taste of Brazil. With a plot that hardly wanes or feels overwrought, this and Leone's Once Upon A Time In America both add a level of maturity and adulthood before a childs time (the young transexuals relationships, and Pixote's witnessing of death, rape and causing murder). This however does not glorify violence of the young through means of shock like in Kick-Ass but as the title suggests 'Survival of the Weakest'. There are procedures put into place to protect children from being sentenced for crimes they commit if they are orphans and they are thus exploited that way, falling through the only system that can help them while those in power suck on their miserable cicumstance. In essence Pixote deserves one of the few 10's I have ever given for commiting a reality that goes further than its peers, and one which neither seems exaggerated or hidden in focus, helping it become of the world's greatest depictions of youth livelihood. Incredible, if a difficult watch at times.

Verdict: 95/100 - As graphic and disheartening as they come. Fernando Silvas still shows that against many odds of his lifestyle you can have hope, dreams and actually live. May he rest in peace.
December 5, 2009
A landmark in both Brazilian and independent cinema, Pixote is a heartwarming and poignant depiction of the inherant problem of street children in the dangerous streets of Brazil.
This tale weaves seemlessly from the corrupt and deplorable adolecant penitentiaries to the lively beaches to the dingy slums taking the viewer on a realistic and captivating journey across the fragmented and topsy turvy world of Brazilian culture and society.
Hector Babenco's visionary masterpeice incorperates gorgeous cinematography with inovative camera work to fully excentuate the well scouted and thought provoking settings he chooses to place his free willed characters. The acting is so sublime that it raises the fine line of reality and fiction in every scene and solidifies his intentions and message in an instantaneous fashion.
Pixote is one of the most historically important films in world cinema and is a must see for anyone who desires depth and meaning in the films they see. Flawless in every capacity from start to finish, as close to perfect as you will ever see in a film.
August 3, 2009
Not always coherent, but powerful. Grittier and (tragically) more believable than City of God
March 12, 2009
Wow one of the heaviest movies I have ever seen. The despair of the Brazilian Underworld made me glad to be an American as I exited the theater. I saw this in 1981 on the big screen in Dallas Texas. Having living in Brazil for a year when I was 21 I have a liking for all films Brazilian. This one is a real torture shocker. Its 2009 and I am interested in seeing it again but Net Flix is not stocking it. I ordered Hector Babenco's Ironweed today but that film also has a long wait. I might see if I can buy it on ebay or amazon. I might get into the plot of Pixote later in the week if i have more time to write here but for now I will just state that this is a very very powerful film. A must for ever student of serious art film. five stars highest rating
November 19, 2004
[font=Arial][color=black]I realize that pitting these two films against each other isn't necessarily the right thing--they come from completely different eras, but they both more or less approach the same social issues that plague Brazilian life: children without a family, and the results of youth homelessness.[/color][/font]
[font=Arial][color=black][i]Pixote[/i], in a way is more closely related to Truffaut's [i]400 Blows[/i] than [i]City of God[/i]. In 1981, Hector Babenco's effort to bring the issue of 3 million homeless children in the streets of Sao Paulo, Brazil to a wider audience. The story traces the life of a ten year old boy, Pixote, who escapes a reform school (that seems more like prison), and from there tries to survive with three other friends on the streets. Watching this film today, after seeing [i]City of God[/i], definately had an effect on my reception of it because it approaches the issue in a completely different aesthetic than Fernando Meirelles and Katia Lund. [i]City of God[/i], thanks primarily to technical innovations in the medium, brings its point across much more harshly and I would argue less effectively than [i]Pixote[/i], but the former seems to stress a viewer response to the social issue more so the latter. [/color][/font]
[font=Arial][color=black][i]City of God[/i] disconnects itself from the audience at some point; its flashy and stylized, the violence is brutal and the soundtrack is fantastic. This then pushes it into a category of stylized violent films that approach less important issues than poverty and choas of Brazilian children's lives, and concludes on a more uplifting note than [i]Pixote[/i]. Indeed, [i]City of God[/i] then is bound to appeal to a wider audience, such as the males which cling to the presentation of the message in [i]Fight Club[/i].[/color][/font]
[font=Arial][color=black]In the end, both films, for different reasons acheive their goal by moving the viewer internally, but fail to take those internal effects and turn them into action and response. Maybe this isn't the point of [i]City of God[/i], but it sure seems to be the point of [i]Pixote[/i], as before the film begins we are briefed on the horrible status of Brazilian children by Babenco.[/color][/font]
[font=Arial][color=black]See them both, on the same night if you have the time, and you won't regret it.[/color][/font]
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