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Bus 174

4.0 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews

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(Jul 20, 2004)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

On June 12, 2000, a bus filled with passengers was hijacked in Rio de Janeiro in broad daylight. The kidnapper, Sandro do Nascimento, terrorized his victims for four and a half hours as the whole country watched the drama broadcast live on Brazilian T. Based on extensive research of stock footage, interviews and official documents, "Bus 174" is the careful investigation of the hijacking -- focusing on andro do Nascimento, his childhood, and how he was unavoidably doomed he was to become a bandit.

A shocking, hypnotic look at a real-life disaster. In June 2000, an armed gunman hijacked a bus in downtown Rio de Janeiro. An angry, strung-out former street kid, he spent an afternoon threatening his hostages while the lurid drama was broadcast live over the national TV networks. The extensive newsreel footage from this terrible event forms the bulk of Bus 174, but director Jose Padilha takes time to fill in the background, too: the poverty-broken world of the gunmen is detailed, and so is the political situation that led to some ludicrous decision-making on the part of the authorities during the siege. The fact that most viewers outside Brazil don't know how the ordeal ended will add to the suspense, but either way this is a gripping experience. The sight of the crazed hijacker, self-consciously styling his weird version of action-movie villainy, will haunt you long after the film is over. --Robert Horton

Special Features

  • Audio commentaries
  • Deleted scenes
  • "The Making of Bus 174"

Product Details

  • Actors: Sandro do Nascimento, Rodrigo Pimentel, Luiz Eduardo Soares, Anonymous, Maria Aparecida
  • Directors: Felipe Lacerda, José Padilha
  • Writers: José Padilha, Bráulio Mantovani
  • Producers: Rodrigo Pimentel, José Padilha, Marcos Prado
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Letterboxed, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
  • Studio: Virgil Films
  • DVD Release Date: July 20, 2004
  • Run Time: 122 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00022FW4U
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #89,685 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Bus 174" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Roland E. Zwick on November 23, 2004
Format: DVD
On June 12th, 2000, a man boarded a bus in Rio de Janeiro with the intention of robbing its passengers. When the robbery turned sour, Sandro, the perpetrator, turned the driver and the passengers into hostages, threatening to kill them one by one if his demands weren't met. Carried live on Brazilian television, the event garnered national attention as the tense standoff between Sandro and the police played itself out. "Bus 174," a riveting documentary by Jose Padilha and Felipe Lacerda, is an account of that event.

Not content to merely rehash the details of that day's experience, the filmmakers use their film as an opportunity to examine many of the social ills that laid the groundwork for the tragedy in the first place. The harshest criticism is reserved for the Brazilian government and the Brazilian people who look the other way when it comes to the hundreds of homeless children living on the crowded streets of Rio de Janeiro. Sandro was himself such a child, having witnessed the murder of his mother at a young age then turning to street life and street crime as his only means of survival. We learn that not only is the plight of such people routinely ignored by the vast majority of Rio's residents, but that both citizens and government officials have taken a proactive part in harassing and, in some cases, even killing these children. Sandro is clearly a product of his environment, and his actions on that day largely extend from the lack of a societal connection he's felt all his life. The directors also take swipes at an incompetent, corrupt police force, a brutal, dehumanizing prison system, and a sensation-seeking, voyeuristic public who feeds on the unfolding live tragedy as if it were a Hollywood action movie or some kind of lurid scripted drama.
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Format: DVD
Bus 174 was hijacked in June of 2000 on the streets of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, by Sandro di Nascimento, a young man who was one of the so called invisible street people living in the city. Almost immediately hoards of police and television crews appeared on the scene. Approximately 35 million Brazilians watched on TV as the dramatic events of the hijacking were captured on film and transmitted to the public.

The fact that this event was being televised appears to have influenced the strategy of the police to control the situation and negotiate the release of the hostages. Instead of taking action to resolve the problem, the police talked aimlessly with Sandro for several hours as he ranted and raved, threatened to kill various passengers, made demands of the authorities, and in the end left the bus with a young woman tightly in his grasp as he pointed a handgun to her head. What followed was an all too predicatable series of events that left both the young woman and Sandro dead.

If this factual documentation of the events of the Bus 174 tragedy were the entire story, this film would not have generated the notoriety it has received. Fortunately, director Jose Padilha realized that a much bigger story needed to be told. Consequently, he skillfully includes background material about Sandro and the so called invisible street people who roam the streets of Rio de Janeiro.

The invisible ones start out like Sandro as young children with no place to go and no one to care for them. They live by wandering the streets searching for something to steal. They sleep in cardboard shelters, if they are lucky, or huddled together in nooks and crannies of public buildings or churches.
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Comment 40 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
A word of advice: if you are going to review, please DO NOT give away the ending...I'm glad I read all these reviews after I saw the video...part of the film's power is the suspense.

ANYway, I showed this video to my criminal justice class and we did a compare/contrast to the shootings at Columbine high school. Emotions in the class ranged from frustration to anger to sadness and students left the room talking about it!

Although the film may be viewed as biased, there is no question to reality when one sees the interior of the jails and the treatment of the inmates, learns of the lack of training and sees it in the Rio PD, and observes the street kids as they huddle on cement in shabby blankets, sniff paint & glue from a plastic bottle, and don worn clothing with American sports logos. It is gritty, it is suspenseful, it is dark and eye-opeing and everything you would want in a documentary. The needless waste of human beings, the surreal world outside of the US and inside of a Rio jail, and the videos of the streets where "Sergio" survived is in your face without being preachy or judgemental.

I highly recommend this video to other educators, and when you compare it to Columbine high school shootings, it brings it home with a look at culture, law enforcement, government, etc.
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Format: DVD
The event this documentary is about, later known as "Bus 174 Affair" is about a youth from the streets who tries to rob a bus load of people and gets caught in the act by police; leading to a standoff.

But this documentary gets deep into the life of the perpatrator Sandro's life, interviewing cellmates, family members, friends, social workers, etc. It goes into the history of streetkids like him, the history of Brazilian poverty. It portrays a very broad picture of Brazilian poverty, Brazilian police brutality and Brazilian street life.

I would recommend this movie to anyone who's interested in the origins of crime, the origins of violence. If you liked the documentary accompanying the City of God DVD then you'll love this documentary as well.

It is a breathtaking documentary that's ending is totally unpredictable and will definately leave you with a lot to think about.
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