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Bus 174 (2002)

Cast: Rodrigo Pimentel, Yvonne Bezerra de Mello
Director: Jose Padilha, Jose Padilha
    see all cast/crew...
Studio: Hart Sharp Video
Genre: Documentary, Foreign, Political & Social Issues, Latin America, Brazil
Running Time: 120 min.
Languages: Portuguese
Subtitles: English
    see additional details...

In June of 2000, a young homeless man, evidently high on drugs, made a failed attempt to rob a bus in a wealthy Rio de Janeiro neighborhood. When his plans went awry, the young man, Sandro do Nascimento, armed with a pistol, took the bus passengers hostage. Soon, cops and reporters surrounded the bus. A SWAT team arrived. About four hours later, the incident came to a horrific and tragic end. Filmmaker José Padilha's documentary, Bus 174, explores the events of that day. The film uses a great deal of file footage of the event, in addition to interviews with hostages, policemen, reporters, and others connected to the incident and to the unstable and desperate young man at its center. The filmmakers explore social conditions in the city, along with the personal traumas that led Sandro to his desperate act. As a child, Sandro had witnessed the brutal murder of his mother, and had subsequently found himself on the streets at an early age. In 1993, he survived the infamous massacre of homeless youths at Candelária, which is widely thought to have been committed by police officers. Sandro was also imprisoned at a youth facility, and in a city jail, and the appalling conditions in those prisons are also depicted in the film. Bus 174 was shown at New Directors/New Films in 2003. ~ Josh Ralske, All Movie Guide

Special Features:

  • The Making of Bus 174
  • Additional Interviews

GreenCine Member Reviews

More Perils of Colonization by talltale July 23, 2004 - 3:38 PM PDT
5 out of 6 members found this review helpful
BUS 174 is a coup of sorts, and--as are so many of the movies coming out of Brazil--a pretty depressing one. Due to the convergence of chance and circumstance, the attempted hijacking of a public bus becomes a you-are-there documentary. After the fact, the filmmakers added interviews with many of the parties involved (and their relatives) which all ends up as this two-hour probe into a dismal country in which you'd better damn well be rich--or plan to "off" yourself early on. As filmmaking, this one has the kind of shameful appeal of watching a horrible accident take place, with the "good" guys sharing the blame as often as the bad. The filmmakers want to make social/political/economic points, and they do, but via some not quite kosher packaging. Yet, given the sleazy and repressive locale they are dealing with, it's most likely the best they could manage. And the best is good enough to leave you angry and depressed.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 7.20)
107 Votes
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