Common Sense Note
Parents need to know that this documentary explores the challenging lives of incredibly poor people who work in an enormous bleak, smelly landfill outside of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The poverty and hopelessness of the setting are successfully countered, however, by the movie's in-depth portrayal of some of the landfill's residents and some extraordinary people who are committed to helping them. What could be depressing, disturbing, or simply sad (especially for kids not mature enough to discern the complexities of such a situation), is, in fact, uplifting, triumphant, and encourages people to look beneath the surface of victimhood to see the humanity and dignity that lives there. There are references to other options for the landfill workers, which include prostitution, drug dealing and other criminal activity.
Some discussion of prostitution, i.e. "turning tricks." Some sexy costumes are visible in a parade.
No violence, but some disturbing scenes and subjects. Scenes of poverty: people living in very close quarters, surviving on little food, seeing their children rarely. And sad stories of lost children, illness, and loss.
A few coarse words sprinkled throughout: "s--t," "bulls--t," "crap," "screwed."
This film is filled with positive, inspiring themes. Creativity and artistry are seen as life-changing, gratifying, and sustaining. Even in situations of abject poverty and hopelessness, people are able to find dignity, as well as times of joy and satisfaction for hard work. Uniting in a common cause as the "association of pickers" can produce profound benefits for all. And, finally, single individuals willing to devote energy, resources, and time can impact the world, especially when they have the support of others.
Drugs / Tobacco /
Brief references in conversation to drug dealing, drinking.