The Festival’s flagship section, gutsy cinema that breaks new ground
TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO
| 104 minutes | 2014
Young Charlie is struggling to survive in the mean streets of Port of Spain, Trinidad. After exhausting the last of his resources, one night he must decide what direction his life will take when he meets a young prostitute in trouble. Nervous, raw, energetic, colourful, excitedly edited, backed by a dizzying soca soundtrack: in its exploration of urban violence, God Loves the Fighter recalls the shock of Cidade de Deus (City of God). With this first feature, Damian Marcano wanted to take an insider’s look at the seething neighbourhoods where he grew up, putting the viewer in the skin of the tough residents who, despite enduring daily miseries, also see beauty in life. With the violence and rage come true street poetry and urban culture, in the form of our homeless narrator, a kind of modern prophet that no one will listen to, who knows every little secret the city holds and has a gift for words. In the end, God Loves the Fighter is a moral and political fable that challenges our prejudices and expectations, as well as the ways in which a social environment shapes a person.
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