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Kill the Messenger (2015)

Kill the Messenger poster.jpg

Beware the contact who uses you to have a case quashed in court and it leads you down a rabbit hole of unimaginable horror … Gary Webb was a smalltown California reporter when he was given a lead on a story that suggested the CIA flooded the ghettoes with crack cocaine in the 1980s to fund their fight against the Contras. When his story appeared in the San Jose Mercury News in the mid-90s his life started to get very complicated indeed, leading to threats, demotion, separation from his family and being torn apart on heavily government-supporting newspapers and TV shows. And that was before Ray Liotta paid a visit in the middle of the night. Even when he was named Reporter of the Year his colleagues shunned him. This isn’t exactly All the President’s Men but it’s a terrible indictment of what really goes on in the US on occasions when the political ends justify some pretty dreadful means, with or without the approval of the President. And The LA Times doesn’t come out too well from this, unlike the former movie which extolled big city journalists and was essentially a buddy film, when you think about it. Gary Webb was a lone voice. As he was warned, Some stories are just too true to tell. And the coda is just horrible. If only all reporters told the truth: but then there would be far fewer of them. Webb became the target, not the drug runners. There are still some naysayers out there, whatever John Kerry might have validated in the interim.

About elainelennon

An occasional movie-watching diary.

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