Bus 174

In Bus 174, the directors, José Padilha and Felipe Lacerda, illustrate the complicated life of Sondro Do Nascimento living in the city of Rio de Janeiro. The movie evokes a sympathy towards the less fortunate inhabitants of the large cities, and what those inhabitants feel forced to do when times get tougher. The readings compliment the movie by offering up more sympathetic situations that show why the crime was committed. Also, the readings express that a city’s want for modernity can lead to more unemployed, and more people forced toward a life of delinquency.
The story, The Drive-by Victim, written by Alberto Salcedo Ramos, is a perfect example of why street kids or gangs in cities, like Rio de Janeiro, commit acts of crime and violence. The driver of the car in The Drive-by Victim asks the passenger, “Do you know why we are doing this, … Because they hurt one of the guys in the gang and we have to get together three million pesos tonight” (Ramos 137). These words the driver speaks show that there was an ulterior motive for the actions of crimes committed by the street kids in the town. Like the thieves in The Drive-by Victim, Sondro  is driven to commit the crimes he does because of his circumstances. These circumstance come from a variety of places but focus around the city’s street kids. The street kids seek the street because their families cannot support them. One of the reasons that the families cannot support their children is because of the modernizing of jobs and technology. In Alma Guillermo’s book, The Heart that Bleeds, expresses the troubles the Mariachi bands faced when a new subway was placed in the town. By putting in the subway system, the government steered the tourists away from the plaza that would get the Mariachis lots of money. The placement of the subway station interferes with traffic flowing through the plaza where the Mariachis played. That leads to people not being able to survive in the market place, and leads to people resorting to crime in order to support their families.
The acts of violence will breed more violence. This is how the shanty towns developed. More and more people moved to the city looking for jobs, but the city did not have enough jobs to support them. These people congregated, and created a group. All of this goes to show the sympathy the audience has for Sondro.  He was forced to watch his mother be stabbed to death. He grew up in a world of violence that only bred more violence. Violence becomes socially acceptable when a people accept it as a way of life. Like the characters in The Drive-by Victim, Sondro is trying to make a point when he holds up bus 174.  Sondro is much like the Mariachi players, his mother was taken from him like the Mariachis’ tourists were taken away. Because their main source of income was gone, both groups of people are forced to make ends meet elsewhere. Had modernity not been a part of the culture that shaped his life, Sondro would not have been in the same predicament.