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Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars
3.6 out of 5 stars
Format: Blu-ray|Change
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on July 25, 2001
How sickeningly contrived and preachy can a film be?
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on September 1, 2015
Educational I guess, but way too slow and long.
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on June 30, 2001
This movie was slow, and never got to the point
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oddly enough, even though i rate this 3 stars, i am preferring this alliance blu-ray xfer of the film over the universal and criterion, which have been altered from it's original theatrical presentation ...... to be sharper and to essentially have more robust colour timing (by possible removal of filters that were used originally)...... all approved by the director.

the alliance disc is interlaced as well. which is inexcusable really. 1080i

so i dock 2 stars off the score, as a progressive transfer is what this, and ALL films deserve.

I saw this film in the cinema, when it opened, and I am most definitely a fan of that particular version ..... when it comes to it's visual presentation for home video.

the segments in mexico are supposed to look that blown out and soft .....

i think it works beautifully. as does the extremely minimal sound design. i say this as sound fx editor ...... the sound of the film promotes contemplation from the viewer , rather than passively being overwhelmed by the 'in your face' sonic detail of typical modern day films ......... the images, the dialog, and the score, are the big players in this film.


5 stars for the film
3 for the transfer.

ultimately, it is nice to have a choice .... and so, one can see comparisons of the various HD xfers of this film online
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on September 22, 2003
I don't understand why this movie has received such great reviews when it's nothing more than a overhyped docu-drama. There's nothing new in this movie that any moderately educated person wouldn't already know about the illegal drug market just by reading the paper or watching the news. Urban street low-lifes who sell crack to rich sub-urbanites; rigid drug czars who think that militarizing police departments and expanding the penal system are good ways of battling drugs; corrupt Latin businessmen in the "coffee business" whose wives are so busy shopping with the illegal dinero that they don't care what business their husbands are in; and, finally corrupt police chiefs and generalisimos who are more than happy in giving directions or giving rides to desert "coyotes" to help them get around the [border guards] across the border.
So, in the end one must ask: what's the point of this movie? It neither educates or entertains. Those two elements usually result in one conclusion: boredom. Over 2 hours of predictable snail-paced plots about things people have already seen on countless episodes of Miami Vice, Cops, and Law and Order, to name a few. This movie was made twenty years too late! As a matter of fact; since these problems were already manifest in the 60s, maybe it was made 40 years too late.
Save your money and time: rent it if you must. It may interest you if you have no clue as to drug related crimes or drug culture. As I've said though, any person with with a minimal education will find this movie to be a dull rehash of an old story.
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on May 21, 2002
I really don't know where to start. This really had to be the worst movie made in 2001. I just couldn't understand it. The story, or stories in the film. Who played the bad guys? And what was that stupid speech about blacks always seen by whites as drug addicts, that we should undertstand and feel sorry for them because Hey, that's all they know and do to survie. Wasn't the black guy giving the drugs to the girl and pratically having her as a his sex slave, because she...being stupid and rich and having nothing to do with her time needs her drugs. I couldn't stand her and wished she died in the film. She just made me want to beat some sense into her. This is what happens when we give everything to our kids (meaning allowances of over 100 dollars a week) so they start to get bored and have no sense of what it means to work for money or do with time after school. We really need to teach our kids how to be human beings instead of babying them and worrying about hurting there feeling. Because if we don't then we will see our kids turn into monsters who don't care who they hurt, rob, sale there bodies or do stupid things (like Jackass). If I was Michael Douglas I would have beat some reality into the girl and thrown her out on her butt. And the guy who won the supporting Oscar. NO Mexican speaks that way. The accent was wrong and the way the held a converstation. It was like some ignoramus decided to be a screenwriter. What they should have done was go to Mexico and get a real translator and really done a decent job. I Mexican-American, born In Houston, raised in Houston and I consider myself a U.S. citizen just like anyone born here would, white, black, latino, etc. (But I don't consider myself a Mexican, because I've been to Mexico and they don't like Americanized latinos), and I have relatives in Mexico and they laughed at the accent and the stupid conversation the two latino actors were having. It was stupid. A Puerto-Rican accent?, when the character in the movie was Mexican? Makes no sence. The only character I liked was the Chaterine Zeta-Jones role. She was cool. I guess it was the pregancy thing. A pregnant lady who is desperate, who turns into a female Corleone was cool. That was it. But I hate it and I will hate any movie that is politcally correct. Hollywood should not be afraid to show the ugly side of all races, Black, White, Hispanic, Oreantal, and so on. It is real life and real life affects all races...and that means drugs too affect all races.
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on January 22, 2001
If I wanted to watch a documentary on drugs, I would have stayed home and watched PBS. I was bored throughout the entire movie. There was no action, in fact the movie was so quiet you could here the projector going the whole time. I want to watch a movie for entertainment value, to escape reality. This movie is in no way deserving of any awards. Do not see this...!
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on July 15, 2003
Hands down this the worst movie I have ever seen, long boring, I fell asleep 6 times. I wanted to leave before the end, but my wife wanted to ride this lemon out. A terrible film, a terrible waste of talent, I have seen better film on teeth. If you want or need a nap, then by all means, watch this lousy unbearable tedious lemon of a movie.
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on May 27, 2002
This film can be accurately summarized with one word: BORING.
I'm getting sick and tired of getting suckered in by these "star-studded" and "award winning" movies. If this "movie" can get four academy awards then a movie documenting cars rusting should be able to easily qualify for eight academy awards.
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on July 10, 2015
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