Warrior of Light (2003)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

Yvonne Bezerra de Mello is an award-winning artist and human rights activist who has gained international recognition for her projects with street children in Rio de Janeiro. As the wife of a hotelier from a wealthy, traditional Brazilian family, Yvonne enjoyed the benefits of an extremely privileged lifestyle. In 1993, however, she was moved to take action by the execution of eight children by military police. Turning her back on luxuries and leisure, she founded the radical "Children of Light" project committed to the education and protection of abandoned street kids. She not only organizes and fund-raises for the undertaking, but also works actively every day with the kids in the streets and slums of Rio. Offering considerably more than just food and literacy, she nurses the many who have AIDS and encourages them to develop self-esteem by surrounding them with love. Astutely political, intelligent, courageous and infinitely energetic, de Mello is a charismatic and inspirational subject.
Art House & International , Documentary , Drama , Special Interest
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Written By:
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New Yorker Films


Critic Reviews for Warrior of Light

All Critics (6) | Top Critics (3)

Heartbreaking film.

September 12, 2003
New York Post
Top Critic

This remarkable woman has no messianic illusions, despite her celebrity.

September 11, 2003
New York Times
Top Critic

When it sticks to Bezerra de Mello, who's a genuine heroine despite her joking disavowals of her importance, it's riveting.

Full Review… | September 3, 2003
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

The filmmaker tramps from one indistinguishable favela to another in a mind-numbing show-and-tell of de Mello's work.

Full Review… | September 20, 2003
Film Journal International

De Mello's dedication is inspiring enough to speak for itself.

Full Review… | September 11, 2003

A powerful film.

Full Review… | September 3, 2003
Combustible Celluloid

Audience Reviews for Warrior of Light


She is bold, outspoken and charismatic, and you'll never forget her. The film is really a story of a hero: Yvonne Bezerra de Mello. The documentary showcases Project Uere, a humanitarian organization created by de Mello, an upper class artist of gaining an almost mythical stature in Brazil and elsewhere. Dedicated to helping the street children of Rio, Project Uere was created after the savage and widely publicized massacre of Rio street children in 1993. Totally unstaged, "Warrior of Light" shows how Brazil suffers from the wide gap between the rich and the poor, based on class and color. When she could easily retire into her very wealthy enclaves, de Mello reaches out and literally hugs the most powerless victims of abuse and neglect: children. In the process, many of her upper class counterparts ostracize her. Nevertheless, she feeds, clothes, teaches, washes, scolds and protects children who have little knowledge of what "love and security" mean. Like PIXOTE, CITY OF GOD, and BUS 174 (which also featured de Mello in an interview segment), this is a good social responsibility presentation that focuses on Brazilian children. See it and share this inspirational film with people of any age, even though there are some brief grizzly murder scenes. This film was once very hard to obtain in the USA, and it is wonderful that it is becoming more widely available. However, there needs to be a more detailed follow up of developments regarding the project and children involved, like the "7 Up" series

Afro PixFlix
Afro PixFlix

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