I just watched the highly controversial Tropa de Elite, which I was desperate to see after seeing just a few seconds of a report about it from BBC news and consequently Googling it up. The movie runs a narrative using the voice of Capitao Nascimiento (played by the amazing Wagner Moura), a fictional leader of the BOPE or Special Operations Battalion, and elite corp of highly trained soldiers that, if the accounts from the movie are true, operate above the law in what it perceives as an all – out war against drug trafficking in the poor sections of Rio, Brazil.
The movie is a stunning display of violence and real life in the drug dependent slums of Rio, where large sections called Favelas are controlled by drug lords with small armies armed to the teeth with high powered rifles they carry around with them like jewelry. The streets are dark and dirty, the poor wear tatters and live in sub human conditions, the local police are so crooked and desperately corrupt that they often end up in turf fights of their own, and the rich College kids are lazy, doped out brats whose insulated view of the world makes them just as guilty to the depravity around them. On one hand, they work in NGOs trying to help the poor and mouth slogans and sing songs against the police, but on the other they consume and even distribute drugs that helps fund the cartels. A pretty familiar world for the typical city dwelling low income Pinoy, if you ask me.
Anyway I hope to write a more thorough review (although I think I may have already) once I find a new home for Movie Exchange, which I have removed from the server to save bandwidth. I also hope to do a review of the 1994 Hoop Dreams, another gritty documentary which I’ve finally gotten around to watch and was given the highest possible rating by none other than the great Roger Ebert himself, calling it ‘.. is one of the great moviegoing experiences of my lifetime‘.
I have to tell you, Mr. Ebert is one of the few idols I have in life. He is a fantastic writer and speaks of the world around him with complete honesty and a lack of bias that occasionally shakes the foundations of all I had thought were my beliefs. If he says a movie affects him, then by God I will do everything I can to see it – and Hoop Dreams definitely did not disappoint.
Finally, I want to do a review of my sister’s 1.3 li Toyota Vios, which I managed to drive around for a week or so.
Now those are only the stuff I’m planning to do that involves reviews. I got other stuff in line like making HowTo videos, finishing and documenting projects, and finally, joining a group I’ve been wanting to do for quite a while now.
I’ve been thinking long and hard about that last one and I’m not yet finished deliberating about it. It involves even more work for me, but at the end of it I’m pretty sure I won’t regret it because it is something I’ve always wanted to do, which is give back. I am not afraid to fail doing so, because I believe that trying and continuing to try is enough to surpass the possibility of failure. However, I’m not going in there to fail. In order to do so, I need to have everything laid out and planned ie, get my shit in order. Either that or not at all.