TRAFFIC Add To My Top 10

Look Both Ways

Content -3
Quality
None Light Moderate Heavy
Language        
Violence        
Sex        
Nudity        

Release Date: December 27, 2000

Starring: Michael Douglas, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Dennis Quaid, Don Cheadle, & Benicio del Toro

Genre: Drama

Audience: Adults

Rating: R

Runtime: 139 minutes

Address Comments To:

Scott Greenstein, Chairman
USA Films
9333 Wilshire Blvd.
Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Phone: (310) 385-4000
Fax: (310) 385-4408

Content:

(BB, C, PaPa, LLL, VVV, SS, NN, AA, DDD, MMM) Semi-moral worldview with scenes of redemption amid corruption & within a troubled family but with pagan elements of teenage substance abuse, corruption & other immoral behavior; 71 obscenities, 6 profanities (including some exclamations) & some obscenities said in Spanish; strong violence such as police hold men at gunpoint, boy has seizure & stops breathing, implied torture of man with a few slight wounds & screams heard, man threatens child, threats of violence, man pushes other man against fence, depicted man shot multiple times in chest, man killed when car explodes, man shot in back of head execution style, man is poisoned, man seen tied up after being tortured, man has facial wounds, & men wrestle in confrontation; depicted sex, implied sex after boy tells girl his desires, man poses as homosexual in gay bar, lewd sexual talk & implied prostitution; rear & obscured full male nudity, cleavage & implied female nudity in bed; underage alcohol use & drunkenness; detailed depicted drug use & abuse, some of which is later rebuked; and, strong miscellaneous immorality, such as drug smuggling, corruption, blackmail, & premeditated murder.

Summary:

The “war on drugs” is laid out in TRAFFIC, a movie detailing the vindictive, powerful, yet hurtful situations revolving around the drug problem in the United States. Despite a semi-moral story, however, this movie uses depicted sex, nudity, violence, and foul language to get its point across.

Review:

All sides of the drug world are examined in TRAFFIC, a story describing each avenue that drugs can affect, from supply to demand.

Benicio del Toro and Jacob Vargas play Javier Rodriguez and his partner Manolo, two Mexican law enforcement agents. After deterring a truckload of cocaine, the two men are recruited by the corrupt Mexican militia to help wipe out the Tijuana drug cartel.

Meanwhile, in the United States, Judge Robert Lewis, the President’s new “drug czar” played by Michael Douglas, is preparing to take office despite the rising problems within his own family. His own daughter is falling deeper and deeper into drug addiction, and the communication between him and his wife is disintegrating. As he tackles the “war on drugs” for the nation, he slowly realizes the lack of answers for the problems in his own family.

At the same time, Carlos Ayala (Steven Bauer) is being hauled off to jail in front of his wife, Helena (Catherine Zeta-Jones), and their son. Bewildered by her life being turned upside down, Helena now must deal with threats against her son and the debt they owe. She quickly learns the drug “business,” however, and is soon crossing the border to make deals of her own and ensure her lifestyle.

As each of these situations comes to a head, it becomes clear that everyone is somehow connected, despite vast differences. From the DEA agents, to the suppliers and the addicts, the movie fosters the realization that this “war” is not just good versus bad, but rather a complicated problem involving multiple factors.

TRAFFIC communicates all these things effectively to its audience, but it uses depictions of sex, nudity, violence, and plenty of strong foul language to do so. Michael Douglas does a good job in his portrayal of a prominent anti-drug official and a helpless father to a drug-addicted daughter. Eventually, many of the situations are repaired, and justice is not merely mocked, but served. The best lesson, however, is the realization that the so-called “war on drugs” is one that must be fought at home first, with parents building good, moral relationships with their children. Despite these attributes, it is really sad that TRAFFIC uses so much questionable content to prove its point.

In Brief:

The “war on drugs” is laid out in TRAFFIC, a movie detailing the vindictive, powerful, yet hurtful situations revolving around the drug problem in the United States. The movie tells the stories of several different characters on different sides of the illegal drug issue. As each situation comes to a head, it becomes clear that everyone is somehow connected, despite vast differences. From the DEA agents, to the suppliers and the addicts, the movie fosters the realization that this “war” is a complicated problem involving multiple factors.

TRAFFIC communicates all these things effectively to its audience, but it uses strong depictions of sex, nudity, violence, and plenty of foul language to do so. Michael Douglas does a good job in his portrayal of a prominent anti-drug official and a helpless father to a drug-addicted daughter. Eventually, many of the situations are repaired, and justice is not merely mocked, but served. The best lesson, however, is the realization that the so-called “war on drugs” must be fought at home first, with parents building good, moral relationships with their children. Despite these attributes, it is really sad that TRAFFIC uses so much questionable content to prove its point