Dir. by Hector Babenco (1981).
Babenco’s uncompromisingly grim portrait of juvenile poverty dramatizes the plight of homeless children on the streets of Brazil, victims of a system that breeds hardened criminals from young delinquents. Much of its power comes from a stunning, horrifyingly natural performance in the title role by 11-year-old Fernando Ramos Da Silva, a real-life slum kid who, after completing the movie, returned to a life of crime and was killed by the police.

Sun., Sept. 20, 5:30 p.m., 2009