Narco Cultura
Narco Cultura
IDFA 2013

Narco Cultura

Shaul Schwarz
United States, Israel
103 min
Dutch Premiere
Festival history
Richard Soto is at the center of the storm that is the Mexican drug war. He is a forensic examiner in Juarez, one of the most dangerous cities in the world - there were 3,622 murders in 2010 alone. Every day, Soto drives around his beloved but so terribly violent city picking up lifeless bodies. Award-winning photographer Shaul Schwarz brings the daily dramas to the screen with great calmness and sensitivity, accompanied by a voice-over in which Soto reflects on his life in Juarez. Meanwhile, a subculture is blossoming in the United States that sings the praises of the drug world through the Mexican version of gangsta rap known as narcocorridos. And family man Edgar Quintero is reaping the rewards with his narcocorridos, about the lives of the Mexican drug barons who have such elevated status among Latin American youth. The songs reflect a macabre vision of the American dream, in which the drug trade is the key to fame, success, and an escape from poverty. The camera closely follows Quintero as he goes about his dynamic life, replete with music, drugs and weapons. is a two-sided film: while Quintero exalts the purported virtues of the drug world onstage in El Paso for a cheering crowd, Soto is reciting a short prayer before embarking on his long day. He wouldn’t be the first forensic examiner to become a victim of drug violence.
Screening copy
World Sales