Narco Cultura

Director: Shaul Schwarz

Institute History

  • 2013 Sundance Film Festival


To a growing number of Mexicans and Latinos in the Americas, narco-traffickers have become iconic outlaws and the new models of fame and success. They represent a pathway out of the ghetto, nurturing a new American dream fueled by the war on drugs. Narco Cultura looks at this explosive phenomenon from within, exposing cycles of addiction to money, drugs, and violence that are rapidly gaining strength on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border.

Artfully lensed, Narco Cultura exquisitely manages to capture the horrific devastation wreaked by the drug cartels. Focusing on certain disparate individuals impacted by them, including a narco-corridos singer in the U.S. and a crime scene investigator in Juarez, the film vividly portrays both the allure and the human cost of it all. Photographer/filmmaker Shaul Schwarz has crafted a dazzling, yet harrowing, examination of the viral effect of the violence that has reshaped the face of a country and created an entire subculture that celebrates corruption.

(Archives note: see also Shaul Schwarz's Meet The Artist interview on our YouTube Channel.)

— T. G.

Screening Details

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