Director: Michael Cuesta
Starring: Jeremy Renner, Robert Patrick, Jena Sims
Release Date: October 10, 2014
In 1996, Gary Webb published articles under his 'Dark Alliance' series that exposed the CIA's enrollment in the funding of the Nicaraguan contra's to smuggle cocaine into the United States. The articles faced heavy attacks as jealous bigger newspaper companies and of course the CIA scrutinized Webb's sources and ethics. Just like investigative journalism, Kill the Messenger isn't all what it is cracked to be.
Two-time Academy Award nominee Jeremy Renner leads an all-star cast in a dramatic thriller based on the remarkable true story of Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Gary Webb. Webb stumbles onto a story which leads to the shady origins of the men who started the crack epidemic on the nation's streets...and further alleges that the CIA was aware of major dealers who were smuggling cocaine into the U.S., and using the profits to arm rebels fighting in Nicaragua. Despite warnings from drug kingpins and CIA operatives to stop his investigation, Webb keeps digging to uncover a conspiracy with explosive implications. His journey takes him from the prisons of California to the villages of Nicaragua to the highest corridors of power in Washington, D.C. - and draws the kind of attention that threatens not just his career, but his family and his life
If this film was only first forty-five minutes in length then this review will read much differently. I will tell you to see this film opening weekend as it will receive a 'Full Movie Experience' rating. Wouldn't be surprise either since director Michael Cuesta has directed numerous television shows and even took home a Primetime Emmy for Homeland. Unfortunately, it is not that simple. The first forty-five minutes will have you on the edge of your seat as Webb travels the globe to find the truth behind this CIA conspiracy. As Webb learns new information, perhaps even yourself will learn some new history as well, the suspense only grows.
After Webb publishes the articles and the tables get turned against him, the film loses all its intensity and suspense. You find yourself now slouching in your chair, just waiting for anything to happen to grab your attention again. Has Cuesta never directed a two-hour television special before? Even the ending leaves you waiting for more, literally. As the film ends with a run-on shot of an escalator, you are waiting and hoping something more happens. Perhaps giving the viewers a better understanding of the flaws behind Webb's article or extending the timeline that the film covers.
Regardless, Kill the Messenger is a film you should check out at one point due to the facts that are covered within the film. You will learn something new about our government and the war on drugs.
Labels: 2014, Jena Sims, Jeremy Renner, kill the messenger, Michael Cuesta, Movie Review, On Demand, Robert Patrick