Analysis Of Thirst To Kill In City Of God

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In the scene “Thirst to Kill” from City of God (Fernando Meirelles & Katia Lund, 2002) we get a glance into Li’l Ze’s horrific childhood and witness how he developed and satisfied his desire to kill. The film faultlessly captures his desperate hunger for power and thirst to kill with the use of lighting, editing, sound, mise-en-scene, and cinematography to implicitly suggest that Li’l Ze’s lack of positive influences, lack of basic necessities, and lack of respect as a child ultimately skewed his perception of respect to the point he became a bloodthirsty sociopath.
The scene starts with Li’l Ze walking into Blacky’s house uninvited. Blacky calls him “Li’l Dice” which he immediately reject, and gives us his new name, “L’il Ze.” The scene quickly
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From the beginning of the scene, Li’l Ze’s face is well-lit and is most illuminated at the start of the montage, where he murders many people, but as the scene ends, the lighting is near dark and the camera grows shakier, distorting Li’l Ze’s face to the point it is almost unrecognizable. This implicitly suggest two things. The first being that his is face becoming hidden from view allows the viewer to picture someone else’s face in that position and by doing this it suggests that anyone from the same conditions and dangerous environments as Li’l Ze can develop the same murderous, sociopathic behavior that Li’l Ze exhibits. The second thing it implicitly suggest is that Li’l Ze is getting lost inside the depth of his actions. His face being in the shadows symbolizes that he is without light, or without purpose. Now that he has power and a name for himself, he has forgotten his original purpose for killing and does so at this point for …show more content…
Although he accompanies Li’l Ze when he enters Blacky’s house, we don’t really know who Benny is until Li’l Ze leaves Rio in the flashback. The narrator says “he had to work hard for peanuts” as Li’l Ze is seen shining a white man’s shoe. The action of him doing such menial work brings the audience to believe that Li’l Ze is yet again working beneath others. Immediately after the narrator tells us that Li’l Ze is working hard just to eat, Benny beats the man over the head with a wooden plank to the point he becomes unconscious and they rob him. This suggests that Li’l Ze is comfortable manipulating others into believing that he is below them all the while he is actually pulling the wool over their eyes. In the next take Benny and Li’l Ze are counting the money they have acquired from stealing purses when Benny exclaims “You have more money than me”, to which Li’l Ze replies “It was my idea.” Although they are both doing the same illegal activities for profit, and therefore are equals, Li’l Ze still conveys a need for superiority over Benny, even when they come from the same background and have a close friendship. Growing up, he was not taught respect and this is another example of how he believes being superior and having power over others is the equivalent to

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