favela rising

If you know anyone that is an aspiring rapper please take them to see this film. I guarantee you will see that the music we listen to has lost all of its validity. There was a time when Hip-Hop music was used to educate, enlighten and empower the youth. All American Hip-Hop seeks to do now is make the youth consumers serving lifetime sentences in poverty and despair. This movie will remind you that there is another way.

‘Favela Rising’ tells the story of ANDERSON SA, a former drug trafficker from Rio de Janeiro‚Äôs most feared slum, who becomes a social activist and uses music and dance, inspired by the rhythms of his streets, to combat the violence and oppression that have affected generation after generation of impoverished teens. SA’s grassroots Afro-Reggae movement becomes a vital force in unifying a divided city, combating teenage drug armies, and overcoming police corruption.

Then, at the height of his success, a tragic accident threatens to silence the movement forever. Filmed over more than two years in the most desperate neighborhoods of Rio, the film illustrates how art and culture can be catalysts for social change, and how even the most unexpected adversity, both personal and societal, can be overcome.

The cinematography rivals that of City of God because it shows the actual poverty that exists in Brazil. This story is real though and it shows the power of a true believer.


  1. Tope says:

    Word. Hip hop is no longer a voice of protest, a method of mobilization or at least method of chronicling our wretched condition. Every time I make this complaint I’m dismissed as just another over nostalgic old school rap head. In America, black people are literally reveling in our own downfall. Remember that old story about what the fuck was wrong with the last dumb motherfucker that cut the last tree on Easter Island down? I don’t think that future cultural anthropologist will listen to Laffy Taffy or the next Kay Slay mix tape be as awed as they are by those damn statues. Or perhaps they will but for all the wrong reasons. Also could you ever imagie any of our youth using the language of collective identity, collective mobilization or cultural advancement as employed by those cats in the film? If so, could you ever see them getting on MTV or releasing the next sundance type of film? Tangentially, I think it’s damn well time that black Americans/African-Americans start playing instruments again. Nobody’s culture is synthesized.

Leave a Reply for Tope