Based on Gary Webb's biographical book "Dark Alliance" and Nick Schou's follow up, "Kill the Messenger," this R-rated script by Peter Landesman and Nick Schou, is directed by Michael Cuesta ("Homeland").
This involving but harrowing story explains how an illegal cocaine-for-arms deal was cobbled together to fund anti-Communist rebels in Nicaragua. Reporter Gary Webb's work threatens to uncover some closely guarded secrets. We soon see how character assassination works as governmental agencies begin to debunk his exposé and deny any connection to drug trafficking.
This gold-star cast includes:
- * Jeremy Renner ("American Hustle") is wonderful as Pulitzer Prize winner Gary Webb, the investigative reporter who is handed a transcript of testimony from a grand jury hearing. He is stunned to see a cover up between cocaine traffickers and governmental agencies; he immediately sets out to discover the truth.
- * Rosemarie DeWitt (The Watch"") is his wife Sue. She has faithfully come with him to California, but there is "too much sun!"
- * Mary Elizabeth Winstead ("Alex of Venice") plays Anna, Webb's editor. She tries to talk him out of his big story.
- * Michael Sheen ("Admission") brings us Fred Weil, the fellow from the National Security Agency. He cautions our hero, "Some stories are too true to tell!"
- * Ray Liotta (Muppets Most Wanted") John Cullen was deeply involved on both sides of the conspiracy, so he is determined to clear his own conscience.
- * Michael K. Williams ("RoboCop") as Ricky Ross, the jailed cocaine kingpin who is the first to explain to Gary the connection between drugs and the U.S. government.
As you might expect, it's hard to find any good guys as the smear campaign against our hero gains momentum. Please stay for the post script; it's important!