“City Of God” (2002)

A classic coming of age story set in Rio, “City Of God” received universal acclaim for it’s hard-hitting commentary on growing up in one of the most dangerous places in the world and how a group of young kids deal with it.

A 20 year odyssey starting in the 1960s, we meet our narrator Rocket, an aspiring photographer looking for his big break so he can leave the slums once and for all. The movie chronicles his life as tries to avoid drugs, violence and gangs, all whilst watching his brother Goose get swept up in the madness.

His photography allows him to stay legitimate, and provide an insight into the escalating war between the men who run the neighbourhood, and the children who will eventually take their place.

“City of God” plays out like a series of time bombs, set to explode unexpectedly one after the other. Harrowing, enthralling and heart-breakingly honest, it’s one of the best foreign films i’ve ever seen.