1st\NW Quadrant: The Approval Matrix
Plot Summary: A city is ravaged by an epidemic of instant "white blindness". Those first afflicted are quarantined by the authorities in an abandoned mental hospital where the newly created "society of the blind" quickly breaks down. Criminals and the physically powerful prey upon the weak, hording the meager food rations and committing horrific acts. There is however one eyewitness to the nightmare. A woman whose sight is unaffected by the plague follows her afflicted husband to quarantine. There, keeping her sight a secret, she guides seven strangers who have become, in essence, a family. She leads them out of quarantine and onto the ravaged streets of the city, which has seen all vestiges of civilization crumble. Their voyage is fraught with danger, yet their survival and ultimate redemption reflect the tenacity and depth of the human spirit.
-- Written by Festival de Cannes' Editor\via IMDB
Apparently, the rape scene was recut over six times due to viewers leaving the theater during test screenings.
The director, Fernando Meirelles, said in an exclusive interview with i09, "It was the sixth cut. And we had around 500 people in the theater, and I think 62 walked out. There were two rape scenes. In the first rape scene, there were four or five women who left, and in the second one a bunch of people just stood up and left the theater. I was shocked by that. I didn't know it was so strong. After that I went back and said, "I can't have people walk out." That, to me, was the turning point. And then I showed the film again at a second test screening in New York, and only a few women walked out in the rape scene."
"I thought the film was ready, and then the repsonse was so crazy, so many people leaving, I decided to recut. It was a problem of balance. Sometimes you have a film where more and more people leave the theater... but [in this case] it was only during the rape scene. [That means] I didn't prepare them to get to the scene, or the scene is really too much."