Sunday, May 27, 2007

Cocaine Cowboys

This is a really good documentary about the cocaine trade in Miami. One of the neat things about it is that it devotes some time to the good effects of having drug smugglers in your city; there are lots of new buildings, the economy's thriving, and lots of new construction is revitalizing the landscape. When car dealersships are selling four or five bulletproof Mercedes at a time, at a time when the rest of the country is in a recession, that's the sort of thing that turns your city from Miami 1970 (sleepy retirement town) to Miami 2000 (bustling metropolis and jet-setter destination!).

The editing is amazing. Most of the audio is Jon Roberts, Mickey Munday, or a guy called "Rivi", and if you look closely, you'll notice that they stitched together a lot of different interviews. Roberts's first couple sentences appear to be stitched together from at least three different interviews, held in different locations, at different times. And they fit together perfectly, even though they're cutting from something recorded outside to something recorded inside. I really don't think I've ever seen mid-sentence editing done so well to this degree.

I would also like to commend the director (Billy Corben) for not appearing on screen. I disapprove of documentaries that turn out to be mostly about the documentarian; in Cocaine Cowboys, there's hardly even a voiceover to get in the way.

Also, there should be a movie about Griselda Blanco. Maybe she'll turn up in Medellin, the movie they're trying to make in Entourage.

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