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Based on 27 Reviews
critic reviews (10)
fan reviews ( )
  • 75
    San Francisco Chronicle

    The film takes us behind bars to hear horror stories from prisoners. They're illuminated by a black light to hide their identity. The effect is like looking at an X-ray. Moments like this attest to Padilha's artistry as a filmmaker. show more

  • 88
    Elizabeth Weitzman New York Daily News

    It is to Padilha's enormous credit that he steadfastly kicks aside our own culturally imposed frames of reference, insisting that we see the truth, and the humanity, within this very real story. show more

  • 80
    The Hollywood Reporter

    This gripping Brazilian documentary shows a bus hijacking that spirals out of control because of police incompetence. show more

  • 88
    Roger Ebert Chicago Sun-Times

    If you have seen the masterful 2002 Brazilian film "City of God" or the 1981 film "Pixote," both about the culture of Rio's street people, then Bus 174 plays like a sad and angry real-life sequel. show more

  • 88
    Rene Rodriguez Miami Herald

    A lot of ground for one film to cover, but this smart, absorbing movie, which has been sharply edited by Felipe Lacerda, never feels like it's spreading itself too thin. show more

  • 75
    Michael Wilmington Chicago Tribune

    A unique portrait of modern crime and punishment, gives us terror without filters, a tragic event captured in all its initial immediacy and anguished aftermath. show more

  • 75
    David Sterritt Christian Science Monitor

    A fascinating account, if less urgently compelling than it might have been. show more

  • 75
    V.A. Musetto New York Post

    The drivel they call "reality TV" pales in comparison with the gripping big-screen documentary Bus 174. show more

  • 75
    Wesley Morris Boston Globe

    Engrossing, smartly made documentary. show more

  • 75
    Jennie Punter The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

    Riveting and courageous documentary. show more

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