Favela Frontlines

Relatos do Front

DIRECTOR(S): Renato Martins   COUNTRY: Brazil   YEAR: 2018   LANGUAGE(S): Portuguese, English   SUBTITLES: German, English   RUNNING TIME: 103 min

SECTION: International Forum 2019


Friday, 04.10., 6.00 pm, kommkino, panel discussion afterwards


There are no winners in the war that is being fought between the favela’s drugs smugglers and the police forces in Rio de Janeiro. In the first scene, the camera crew is in the middle of a crossfire between the two sides of the drug war taking place in Rio. Through personal stories from both sides of the conflict, we reach deep into the violent conflict, which has cost many lives in the Brazilian megapolis. Every year, 60,000 murders are committed, and on average one police officer is killed every other day. Many inhabitants of Rio de Janeiro consider being a policeman as a certain road to death, while drug traffickers claim that the conflict is due to police brutality and trigger-happy officers who regard murder as a form of self-defense.
Journalists, historians and judges give us an insight into the structural causes behind a situation where everyone is a loser – not least the survivors. Renato Marten’s investigative film digs a few levels deeper into the brutal conflict, where the country’s traumatic past with slavery and military dictatorship still haunts the present day.


Renato Martins is a director, editor and producer, has a degree in Social Communication and is a founding partner of the production company Jacqueline Filmes. Renato has directed two prize-winning feature films in Brazil and abroad: Geraldinos and A Letter to the Future. Some of his main works as a film editor are: Elite Squad 2,  Democracy in Black and White, How much Time does Time have. His third documentary Favelas Frontline premiered at the Rio de Janeiro International Film Festival in 2018. Martins is currently developing his first fiction feature Sugar Cane.


Atrocidades Maravilhosas (2001), O Meu Odioso e Inacreditável Noivo (2006), A bela e o Mestre (2007), Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian (2007), A Letter to the Future (2011), Geraldinos (2015), Favela Frontlines (2018)

SCRIPT: Gabriel Pardal, Renato Martins, Sergio Barata   PRODUCER: Renato Martins   CAMERA: Manuel Aguas   EDITOR: Pedro Asbeg

PRODUCTION: Jacqueline Filmes    WORLD SALES: Olivier Semonnay, Java Films