Cocaine Bear – A Review.

Does a Bear Get High in the Woods?

A few months back, I came across a movie trailer while perusing the interweb. At first, I did not believe what I was seeing. After watching the preview twice, this information sunk in; a movie in which a bear does cocaine and terrorizes humans is on it’s way to cinemas and it is real. Somethings naturally go together; peanut butter and jelly, Spring time and baseball, and of course, Cocaine and Black bears. The stuff in which dreams are made of. February 24th could not come soon enough.

Usually expectations for a movie of this type should not be set too high. After all, it is a story about Ursus Americanus (black bear, of course) finding a bunch of blow in the forest, and subsequently ingesting a lot of the addictive white powder. My expectations were very high. So did Cocaine Bear fly high, or was it as ridiculous as it sounds? Let us review.

“Hey pal, are you holding?”

Very, very loosely based on true events that took place in 1985 in Georgia, U.S.A., a cocaine smuggler dumps a bunch of cocaine out of an airplane and then himself jumps. The smuggler turned into high-speed dirt as the parachute he was wearing failed to open. The cargo, however, landed in a heavily wooded area. Right where the bear could find it. Thats about the gist of the real life story. Director Elizabeth Banks (Miri – Zach and Miri Make a Porno) however adds a few “Hollywood” elements to make the story much more exciting and horrific. In real life, the bear is found dead with it’s stomach packed full of sniff. The movie bear does not die, but becomes addicted and goes on a spree of violence. There is a cast of characters whom may or may not have side stories. None of this matters. The bear is the true star of the movie. After all, it is titled Cocaine Bear. The only really notable thing about the human actors in the film is that this is the late, great Ray Liotta’s (Goodfellas) final movie appearance. Fittingly, he plays the drug dealer antagonist who goes looking for the scattered bags of dope.

Is this movie disjointed and hindered by characters who have no real reason to be there but to be victimized by a blitzed out Black bear? Yes. Is it a pretty bad and cheesy story? Yes, but does it also have a bear as high as giraffe balls menacing and bludgeoning the people who are arbitrarily in the forest. One hundred percent. Is Cocaine Bear a think piece that requires hours of analysis and discussion? Definitely not. Is Cocaine Bear a fun little piece of film? Absolutely.

Check you expectations and your brain at the door and enjoy.

Cocaine Bear – Directed by Elizabeth Banks. Starring Keri Russel, Alden Ehrenreich, O’Shea Jackson Jr, Ray Liotta

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In 50 (or so) Words…DEADPOOL (2016)

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DEADPOOL (2016)

Directed by: Tim Miller
Starring: Ryan Reynolds, Morena Baccarin, T.J. Miller, Ed Skrein
Twentieth Century Fox, The Donners’ Company, Marvel Enterprises

After discovering that he has terminal cancer, mercenary for hire Wade Wilson is offered to under go an experimental procedure that can save his life, and also give him extraordinary powers. After being lied to and left for dead, Wade discovers he has gained the ability to rapidly heal from injuries. He also left with an appearance only a mother could love. Hell-bent on seeking revenge, Wilson dawns a mask and costume, and takes the moniker “Deadpool”. Along side some familiar “allies”, a quick wit, and armed to the teeth, “The Merc with the Mouth” goes on a killing spree in search of the people who turned him ugly.

Anyone who is a fan of the Deadpool character as he is represented in the Marvel Comics universe knows that the film is actually a pretty close adaptation and stays true to the character. I looked forward to seeing this film as soon as the test footage was leaked a couple years back. I am a fan of the comic book. The “breaking the fourth wall” shtick (Deadpool is aware he is in a comic book and acts accordingly) was, and still is a fresh approach. The movie takes advantage of this, and it is brilliant. This is Deadpool with the gas pedal pinned to the floor. From what I have read, this was Ryan Reynolds’ passion project, and he is brilliant. You could scour the world and not find any actor to play the part of Wade Wilson better than my fellow Canadian. From the humor, action, charm, and countless Easter eggs (intentionally hidden message, or inside joke) that are contained in Deadpool, it’s a hell of a good time at the cinema. I can see this being a movie I can watch time and time again, and still be impressed. I can only hope that Twentieth Century Fox and Marvel Studios have enough sense to add this character to future X-Men based films, because honestly, they have become dry. This is a great example of what can be accomplished when the studio loosens the reigns and lets the creativity flow. What I am trying to say is Deadpool is awesome. At the risk of sounding blasphemous, I may have enjoyed it a little more than The Force Awakens, and I loved that film.

T.