Review: Elite Squad 2 (Tropa de Elite 2)

The Story

A politically inconvenient incident lands Captain Nascimento in a desk job, but being at the top just makes you an easier target.  The world of the Elite Squad gets expanded as we follow the depth and depravity of corruption in Brazil.

The Review

Part 2 of this film series picks up several years after the events of the last film.  Nascimento struggles to pick up the pieces of his personal life, all while his professional life seems to be improving.  Due to events at the beginning of the film, he’s “promoted” into a bureaucratic role as head of the security forces. It seems like the opportunity to finally make a difference on a large scale, not only with his Elite Squad, but as a positive change to the tide of crime and violence that seems to be swallowing Brazil whole.

In the first film, we followed (quite intimately) the lives of individual BOPE members as they survived (or didn’t) the unique brand of cops and robbers.  This next film breaks that canvas wide open and exposes us to  the greater law enforcement world, including the political side of things.  It’s a largely fascinating look at corruption and the ways in which it rots its way through the system from the small beat cops, to the highest of government officials.

Through Nascimento and other supporting characters, we see how good cops turn bad, good cops unwittingly aid others in doing bad, and how seemingly impossible the task of righting the ship can be. It’s a harrowing roller coaster ride through the eyes of a good soldier (Nascimento) and the unfortunate allies that he wins and loses on the way.

Just as in the first film, not everyone will survive the end of this one and this time around, the death toll might just include our main protagonist.

As with the prior film in this series, the music, casting, and overall production values are more than solid and the benefit of watching the first film before this one will leave viewers very satisfied.  It also helps that the ending leaves the audience with a little hope for the future of our characters.  That and hope for us who are looking forward to Jose Padilha’s Robocop.

Conclusion

Overall grade of A

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