Review: ‘Living Rap in Rio’

An enlightening portrait of three rappers in Rio de Janeiro's ghettoes, "Living Rap in Rio" hits the viewer with major doses of realism that overturn a lot of expectations. Not an overview of the city's rap scene, film follows two men and a girl for nine months, concentrating on their lives more than their music. Final twist is a shocker.

An enlightening, poignant portrait of three rappers in Rio de Janeiro’s ghettoes, “Living Rap in Rio” hits the viewer with major doses of realism that overturn a lot of expectations. Not an overview of the city’s rap scene, as the title might suggest, film follows two men and a girl for nine months, concentrating on their lives more than their music. Final twist, which gives a strong sense of closure, is a shocker young documaker Guilherme Coelho could not have anticipated. Broadcasters looking for ethnic flavor should consider this alternative view of the “City of God.” Coelho took director honors and the film won audience award at Rio fest.

Macarrao, who makes his living taking bets on the street, writes lyrics about kids dying of drugs and everyday life in the slums. Toghum is a practicing Buddhist who struggles against his feelings of anger and hatred. Combatente, who sings with an all-girl rap group, is a churchgoer with a regular job. Incredibly, by the end of the film all three have made major shifts. Not at all the kind of upbeat ending suggested by these strong personalities, its somberness hits that much harder.

Living Rap in Rio

Brazil

Production

A Matizar/VideoFilmes production. Produced by Mauricio Andrade Ramos, Mano Teles, Nathaniel Leclery, Guilherme Coelho. Directed by Guilherme Coelho. Written by Coelho, Nathaniel Leclery.

Crew

Camera (color, DV-to-35mm), Alberto Bellezia; editor, Marcia Watzl; sound (Dolby Digital), Leandro Lima. Reviewed at Rio de Janeiro Film Festival (competing), Oct. 5, 2003. Running time: 74 MIN.
Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Film News from Variety

Loading