Classic crime drama ‘City of God,’ other Latin American films in Cine Latino festival

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Alexandre Rodrigues in 'City of God.'

“City of God” took audiences by storm when it was internationally released in 2003. Its gritty portrayal of Rio de Janeiro’s world of organized crime shook viewers and impressed critics, bagging several Oscar nominations as well as awards in film festivals all over.

The younger generation now have the opportunity to see “City of God” on the silver screen as one of the films featured in the Cine Latino Latin American Film Festival, which starts Wednesday at the Shang Cineplex of the Shangri-La Plaza.

“City of God” is scheduled for screening on December 7 at 8PM and on December 10 at 3PM.

Aside from the Brazilian crime film, classic and contemporary films that represent the film industries of the participating Latin American countries — Venezuela, Panama, Mexico, Chile, Argentina and Colombia — will also be screened.

Among them are the family-oriented films “Dois filhos de Francisco (Two Sons of Francisco),” “El Hijo de la Novia (Son of the Bride), ” “Patas Arriba(Upside Down),” and “El comienzo del tiempo (The Beginning of Time).”

“Sofia y el terco (Sofia and the Stubborn),” a drama comedy that tells story of a couple in a small Colombian village that tries to break the monotony in their lives with travel plans, is also in the line-up.

Scenes from Argentina’s ‘Son of the Bride’ and Venezuela’s ‘Upside Down.’

Argentinean Ambassador Roberto Bosch believes that Filipinos will appreciate and truly enjoy the films that will be shown throughout the festival. The ambassador also notes that parallelisms between Latin and Filipino culture can be drawn from the films.

“The movies from Argentina show the family situation. They may be comedy or drama, but they show how much we value the family. And I think that is something we share with Filipinos, ” he said.

Case in point is “El Hijo de la Novia (Son of the Bride),” an Argentinean film about a young man who re-evaluates his priorities and relationship with his parents after experiencing a heart attack.

Ambassador Bosch says of the film, “It’s a very nice and romantic story of two old persons and their son, and how they get together again and go through difficult situations.”

Ten full-length films and six short films have been selected to be part of the Cine Latino Latin American Film Festival. The festival runs until December 10.

For inquiries and screening schedules, call 370-2500 local 597, visit www.shangrila-plaza.com or follow Shangri-La Plaza on Facebook and Instagram: @shangrilaplazaofficial.