The Modern Theater Audience Loves Glamourized Violence
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The modern movie theater audience loves glamourized violence. We want something that takes us out of our mundane lives and throws us into this fantastic, “bad-ass” scene. We seem to be seeking to fulfill some imaginative dream, one that has been conveyed in Hollywood classics for generations. You have Bonnie and Clyde, who made killing a lustful and sexy endeavor, and James Bond who gives an immaculate style and class to the gunshot. When director Fernando Meirelles fills the scenes of City of God with gunshots, we experience the same fearful anticipation as our other violent and beloved classics. However, would an audience member rather fantasize themselves as the girlfriend of a favela gang member running from the law, or a Bond girl running from the law? Meirelles definitely prods at the imagination of his viewer, but unlike the usual kill-for-the-sake-of-killing movie, the violence is a work of realism. The fact there is nothing spared, the fear I felt that a shot might fire at anytime during the scene, is someone’s reality. In the film, we get to peer into the imaginative space of life for a young man in the favelas of Rio de Janeiro, and the idea the no one would want to fill the shoes of our hero in this film, is pivotal to the film’s societal impact. The adrenaline rush we were looking for has turned into an empathetic anxiety with a fellow favelado.
A flash of protagonist, Rocket’s (Alexandre Rodrigues) camera opens the film. Sweeping shots of sharpening knives