“Exquisitely Photographed Gunplay Barely Makes Up For A Confusing Plot”
The pace is quick, the violence is rough, and the visual style is documentary as Padilha hammers home his point: Someone is forever in the pocket of someone else as The System constantly adapts to protect itself.
Lisa Schwarzbaum - Entertainment Weekly
The carnage, although explicit and frequent, is not grotesquely overdone.
Stephen Holden - New York Times
Padhila's cop thriller goes in with all guns blazing. This, the film suggests, is the only language these scum-bums understand.
Xan Brooks - Guardian [UK]
Its conviction makes it tough to dismiss.
Mark Holcomb - Village Voice
Padilha's style is so urgent and immediate that you almost feel like you're in the midst of an especially advanced video game.
Elizabeth Weitzman - New York Daily News
Here's a Brazilian thriller that's so angry and specifically political, it's hard to believe they got away with making it.
Roger Ebert - Chicago Sun-Times
Jammed with cliches but completely engrossing.
J. R. Jones - Chicago Reader
When this Enemy Within settles into key action sequences, such as a stunning nighttime ambush or a daytime battle against Fabio, it becomes wildly entertaining.
Robert Koehler - Variety
No wonder Padilha's been tapped to helm a Hollywood reboot of "RoboCop.''
V.A. Musetto - New York Post
Throttles forward with remarkable aplomb and easily leaves the original in the dust.
William Goss - Film.com
Keeps the snazzy combination of spectacle and polemics in check.
Eric Kohn - indieWIRE
Elite Squad is just urgent and complex enough to make it clear violence is more than a matter for academic debate.
Liam Lacey - Globe and Mail
A fast-paced, hard-hitting Brazilian police thriller.
Stephen Farber - Hollywood Reporter
It resembles a flow chart splattered with blood and spittle, more static and smeary in tone than the finger-pointing corrective director-cowriter Jose Padilha intended.
Robert Abele - Los Angeles Times
- Film Threat
The entire last half hour is just incredibly disingenuous.
Ignatiy Vishnevetsky - Ebert Presents At The Movies
Padilha's film offers no easy answers, but the title is a tip off as to where at least his sympathies lie.
Marc Savlov - Austin Chronicle
A film that grabs you by the shirtfront and rarely lets up its grip.
Shawn Levy - Oregonian
The Enemy Within, it's not just the cops and robbers who are corrupt and greedy and barbarous, but also politicians and media representatives. The "system" is everywhere.
Cynthia Fuchs - PopMatters
Even if it's not as smart as it supposes itself to be, [the film] is still smart enough to be more than a decent way to waste time.
Tim Brayton - Antagony & Ecstasy
An epic crime drama from Rio de Janeiro with a thrilling pace and an over-the-top body count.
Liz Braun - Jam! Movies
There is a deep sense of indignation at the core of The Enemy Within, a righteous fury that pelts every cog of "the system" like machine-gun fire.
Rene Rodriguez - Miami Herald
Hard-hitting Brazilian thriller about police corruption, politics and crime colliding in Rio's favelas and corridors of power and law enforcement is as intelligent as it is entertaining.
Doris Toumarkine - Film Journal International
Moving to its own throbbing beat, Elite Squad: The Enemy Within offers an exhilaratingly bleak vision of what it describes as "an articulation of loathsome interests," in which the well-meaning suffer...
Alison Willmore - AV Club
Our hero's prominence sets up a stellar conclusion that retroactively questions both the first movie and its substantial audience.
Sam Adams - Time Out New York
It's Wagner Moura's spotless embodiment of the principled Brazilian man for whom aggression and being coincide that renders the film such an immersive experience.
Diego Costa - Slant Magazine
"Elite Squad: The Enemy Within" is a vast improvement over the franchise's first installment because it puts more emphasis on the emotional cost of political, economic, and military corruption.
Cole Smithey - ColeSmithey.com
Exquisitely photographed gunplay barely makes up for a confusing plot.
Harvey S. Karten - Compuserve
A cry of frustration full of twists and turns, it certainly excites, but the way in which it sees Brazil's problems as both chronic and incredibly straightforward feels like a bit of a cop out.
Andrew Simpson - Fan The Fire
It's a complicated story told in a single extended flashback with brilliantly staged set pieces and offering an appalling picture of the city that is to host the 2014 Fifa World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games.
Philip French - Observer [UK]
Has a much surer grip of what it wants to say and has lost some of the troubling fascistic overtones of its predecessor.
Alistair Harkness - Scotsman
Its characters and conclusions both haunt.
Nick Hasted - Little White Lies
If it lacks the freshness of Elite Squad and the brilliance of the documentary Bus 174, it's still tensely made and full of fury at the politicians.
Derek Malcolm - This is London
Partly compensates for its shortcomings by adopting a deeper, more analytical approach to its portrayal of endemic police and political corruption.
David Aldridge - Radio Times
It's a massive improvement on the first film - bracing and tightly wound, in charge of its style, and fuelled by an indignation that makes the blood boil.
- Daily Telegraph
The plot is worked out, at times, with a complexity worthy of The Godfather and characters as memorable.
Nigel Andrews - Financial Times
Strikingly shot and savage in its violence this is a white-knuckle ride through the most dangerous corners of the Brazilian city.
Allan Hunter - Daily Express
Padilha delivers a bruising right and left of polemic and action.
Danny Scott - Skinny
Danny Scott - The Skinny
A thumping modern policier with a social-conscience edge.
Trevor Johnston - Time Out
A marked improvement on the first film, it's easy to see why this was such a smash in Brazil. Breathless, brutal and thrilling, it's a gut punch of an action movie.
Philip Wilding - Empire Magazine
Part political thriller, part pummelling polemic.
Matt Glasby - Total Film
Embora continuacao de uma producao de sucesso, o filme tem aspiracoes muito mais nobres do que apenas arrancar mais alguns trocados do publico.
Pablo Villaca - Cinema em Cena