Right out of the headlines, “Narco Cultura” is a documentary that offers insight into the world of drugs and music, north and south of the U.S.-Mexico border.
Narcocorridos is a popular style of music that glorifies drug violence, murder and drug use. It’s also very popular with Mexicans and Latinos in North America. The narco culture has inspired a cottage industry that allows musicians to enjoy a higher lifestyle. Many of them write songs for significant amounts of money. Their clients? Gangs and gang leaders. The songs allow these lowlifes to imagine themselves immortal, even as they get killed in the drug violence in northern Mexico.
“Narco Cultura” is an enlightening peek into this world. The images are sometimes gruesome. Bodies and body parts. Part of the story is told through the eyes of a forensic technician who cleans up the carnage in Juarez. The other half is told by the musicians and some of the gang members who commission the songs.
Narcocorridos is banned on many U.S. radio stations, but the CDs and downloads are widely available. And, there seems to be a large market for these tunes. It’s a problem that clearly needs to be addressed. And, that seems to be the overall message of the film. No preaching. Just the sobering truth. Grade: B
Street Date: February 25, 2014
Format: Blu-ray and DVD
Runtime: 103 minutes
Released by Cinedigm