Just as supreme court judge Douglas is made US drug tsar, his teenage daughter (Christensen) is sliding deeper into drug abuse. Douglas's Mexican counterpart (Milian) says he'll pool resources, but Tijuana cop Del Toro finds his efforts to prevent smuggling under pressure from cartels and corrupt authorities. In San Diego, meanwhile, dismayed to find hubby Bauer is indeed a drug baron, Zeta-Jones discovers she'll do anything to defend her kids and comfortable existence from threats posed on both sides of the law and both sides of the border. There's so much going for this movie. The performances are all topnotch, while director Soderbergh's seemingly effortless mastery of his medium goes from strength to strength. Steering us through a densely detailed script with a clear-eyed sense of purpose and balance, he contributes gritty reportage-style camerawork to enhance an aura of authenticity. It's wise about different kinds of addiction and concepts of family, about the folly, futility and hypocrisy of anti-drug 'wars', and about the awful human cost of it all. And it grips like a vice from start to end.
Cast and crew
Benicio Del Toro