If a name alone can drive people to the cinema, then this movie should do great at the box office, because who doesn’t want to see a film called Cocaine Bear? Now before you get carried away with the image of a cuddly and magnanimous mammal, know this is anything but that.
Based ever so loosely on an actual event when drug runners lost a load of the white powder in the hills of Tennessee. This ultimately led to the overdose death of a 79-kilogram American Black Bear after it ingested copious amounts of the drug. In a scenario that could only happen in America, the deceased bear was then stuffed and now resides in a shopping mall in Kentucky.
Director Elizabeth Banks’ has a sure hand on the tiller and uses her extensive knowledge of the comedy realm to entertain with lots of laughs and more than a subtle amount of gore. It’s all crowd-pleasing stuff. She also leaves no Southern stereotype stone unturned and fills the screen with loveable losers and unheralded heroes.
Make no mistake, if you are rooting for the human beings in this picture, you’ve aligned yourself with the losing side. The mighty Cocaine Bear will prevail. If the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences ever gets it together to give an Oscar for the best digital on-screen animal, the bear with the white nose should be a shoo-in.