Cocaine Cowboys Review: Miami Vice
COCAINE COWBOYS: Tuesday 16th March, More4, 10pm ALERT ME
A couple of decades ago the US seemed to have a pretty relaxed stance on those who smuggled the ol’ Colombian marching powder across their borders.
By the time the government pulled its finger out, this band of little Scarfaces had a foothold on the sun-drenched streets of Florida, and they are now proving a little difficult to evict.
Welcome to the real Miami Vice folks. This film may be over two hours in length but its visceral energy keeps it rolling along breathlessly.
We hear how the one-time retiremnet hotspot Forida, was turned into a gang battleground and epicentre for a wealthy cocaine party culture that exploded in 1979.
The grisly crime-scenes can only be explained by the sheer quantity of money that changes hands in what is estimated to be a $7 billion-a-year trade. But this slick piece of film-making from Billy Corben (if you reckon you’ve heard of him, you may be thinking of the Smashing Pumpkins guitarist) penetrates as far into the world of shady narcotics as any other before it.
Most of his narrative is made constructed from the drug-runners point of view, but he also chats to lawyers, cops and even victims of teh violence that has taken place.