View Full Version : 'City of God' - anyone know what happened to Rocket?

02-10-2004, 11:34 AM
I have just been lucky enough to watch the amazing film 'City of God' and would like to know what happened to the real life Rocket? If you haven't seen this film then I urge you to do so as soon as possible. It is based on a true story and charts the lives of a group of children living in the slums of Rio de Janeiro through adolescence and of one boys (Rocket) eventual escape from the crime-riddled ghetto. Does anyone know what happened to him? Did he make it as a photographer? Is this one of the best films ever made? On a completely unrelated note I also saw 'Bellville Rendezvous' on the same night, which is also amazing albeit completely different. How rare it is to see not one but two amazing films in one evening!

02-10-2004, 05:46 PM
I don't know what happened to Rocket, but it did look encouraging.
City of God was a very good movie.
That story of the apartment was fascinating.
The film was long, and sometimes hard to watch, but I don't think there was a single superfluous moment.

02-11-2004, 06:54 AM
Have people not replied because they don't know what happened to Rocket or because none of you have seen this extraordinary film? Shame on you - rent it now!

02-11-2004, 07:17 AM
Shame on you - rent it now!

Is it out in the rentals now?
It has recently been re-released here in Denver, I saw it in a theater last week.

02-11-2004, 07:36 AM
I rented it last sunday in England so I would have thought it would be available in Denver as you guys seem to get everything first! Seriousley I was blown away by this film, if you liked this then may I recomend a french film called 'La Haine' - its subtitled, black and white but is absolutley amazing, it has a similar style to 'City of God' but is total fiction.

02-11-2004, 08:31 AM
Much thanks for the recommendation, WILLAS. I will try to find La Haine.
Have you ever seen the French film Rififi? Very old, black and white and subtitles, one very outrageous song sequence, but similar gangster themes.

02-11-2004, 08:41 AM
No I haven't but I will try to track it down, i'll also ask my mums SO (he's french and a film buff) to see if he has/knows it. Hmm, maybe this will turn into a film recommendation thread instead? I always like finding obscure wee gems via word of mouth!

Exapno Mapcase
02-11-2004, 10:57 AM
I saw the movie in its current re-release, but I didn't reply because I'm not sure if there is an answer.

The movie is based on a novel which is based on 30-year-old history but is about as "real" as The Godfather is about any real-life story. The novel supposedly has 352[!] characters in it, and Rocket is not the lead in any of its three sections. I can't find any evidence that Rocket is based on one unique real-life character, much less any reference to what happened to him later.

Yes, it's a great film that everyone should see. I think it represents the end of the line for gangster films, though, unless they can come up with a new story line. City of God does everything that is left to do, and they should retire the form for a generation, like westerns were.

02-11-2004, 12:12 PM
I didn't know that much background about the film but was lead to believe that it was based on real events, I must say i'm slightly disappointed that this isn't the case as it really added to my enjoyment of the film. I suppose this explains why no one knew what happened to Rocket.

So does anyone know what became of Indianna Jones? Is he still in the archeology business?

02-11-2004, 12:29 PM
Did you stay and watch the credits?
They had the nonfiction Knockout Ned (have no idea what is real name was) being interviewed, saying exactly the same things that the fictional Ned had said, about how the cops were after him but leaving Lil Ze alone.

02-11-2004, 12:44 PM
So is it real or not? Does Rocket exist? If Knockout Ned is real then surely Rocket is as well? Damn i'm confused! Unfortunatley I didn't watch the credits as I watched the film late at night in bed and the film was the only thing keeping me awake (seriousley if it hadn't been so stupendousley amazing I would have passed out) so I fell asleep as soon as it finished. I'm going to use missing the end creduts as an excuse to rent it again.

Exapno Mapcase
02-11-2004, 01:04 PM
Yes I stayed. I said the novel (and movie) are based on history. And you can find any number of resemblances in The Godfather to real gangsters and the history of the mob in America.

But they are both fiction and fictionalizations.

Here's the closest I can come to an answer.

In the book, Buscapé (Rocket) is based on a real person, a friend of Paulo's. In the movie however, Buscapé (Rocket) the photographer, is based on Paulo Lins.

I don't know what exactly "based on a real person" means. Was the novel Rocket a direct reflection, an adaptation, a composite? From the wording of this quote, the original may not have even been a photographer.

How does this answer the OP? I still don't know. Was Rocket ever as real as Knockout Ned and Lil Ze? I still don't know that either.

11-11-2014, 04:09 AM
Rocket did not go on to be a Photo Journalist. Some of the characters are more loosely derived from real characters then others, like most 'based on a true story' movies. Rocket's character is 95% fiction. It's just a good fictional character perspective that serves as a way to tell the story based on true events.
From the book to the movie, his character shifts from friend of the storyteller to the storyteller himself.T his is a book by Paulo Lins. He's real. He's amazing. In his book, Rocket is a background character that got some pics to the paper, nothing of this extensive photographing the events, no internship, nothing like that.
For the movie, Lins changed Rockets character into the protagonist. It's a writing device utilized in a great way to tell the storyline better for film. His character is simply that of 'narrator'.
Sorry, I was really hoping that he was out there too. Great movie, and it's certainly based on true events and more importantly brought light a dark piece of the world.

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