The name is Rio, but in José Padilha'sElite Squad, it doesn't look like anyone's dancing. The city has been the source of ever-increasing crime, and this turmoil has inspired the director to film an action movie that digs into Rio's underworld. Elite, said to be based on facts, is about a special forces operative who is fighting against Rio's drug gangs, but it isn't a simple case of crime and punishment. The movie includes graphic scenes of torture and execution, which have spurned unrest by Rio's officers, and found itself in a flurry of pirating, as thousands of copies have hit the streets before the film even gets released -- according to The Guardian.

Rio police tried to ban the film from cinemas, but it was backed by the judge who rejected the case, saying that the feature portrayed the "day-to-day reality of a good part of the people living in this city," and even Rio's governor, Sergio Cabral said that it is "faithful in uncovering the serious problems that we face in terms of public security." The city's problems have spurred Bope, the Special Police Operations Battalion to battle the city's enemies "at whatever cost," and in the film, this includes executing drug traffickers with a rifle shot to the head. Obviously, this isn't the feel-good story of the year, but something that'll probably weigh on moviegoers for a long time when it premieres next month in Brazil. Padilha hopes that "people will watch this and say: 'Hell, we have to change these rules. We hope to generate a debate.'" Now we'll have to wait and see if the film gets overseas distribution, and what sort of debate it inspires for world-wide audiences in the wake of Abu Gharib.
categories Movies, Cinematical