Crack Trailer Reveals Netflix Documentary About The Crack Epidemic

The documentary will premiere in January.


Netflix just released a trailer for the upcoming documentary Crack: Cocaine, Corruption & Conspiracy from the award-winning filmmaker Stanley Nelson. The film is an in-depth study of the crack epidemic of the 1980s – specifically, how it was the explicit result of one of the most shameful conspiracies in the country’s history and the havoc the black and brown communities have wreaked to this day.

The trailer is gripping and features a film that is narrated through a large collection of contemporary news and sound bytes interspersed with timely interviews. Crack appears to be a strong indictment of the government and media’s role in using the crisis to further denigrate and stereotype the black community, as well as the hypocritical way the war on drugs targets drug abuse victims (and still sighted).


Image via Netflix

Nelson made an in-depth statement through Netflix explaining his motivation for the project, stating that the spread of the epidemic to all levels of society and government required a similarly epic scope for the film:

“… I wanted to make this film because I firmly believe that the effects of the crack era have not been fully explored. Crack fueled racial and economic inequality, hyper-aggressive policing, mass imprisonment and corruption at the highest levels. Though movies were made back through the 1980s, the crack era has been barely studied outside of a handful of magazine shows. The archive clips we use in the film convey how the media raised crack awareness, demonized “crack mothers”, and foretold a generation of “crack babies” as they saw the community destruction and government failure that really existed before them went, not coped. Now that we are decades after the peak of the crack era, we can see the long-lasting effects with clear eyes. Our aim was for the audience to feel the penetration of crack … We used a lot of archive material from the streets – drug dealers on street corners, people waiting for the unemployed … The film shows the course of cocaine from a party drug on the wall Street to the widespread destruction of poor communities. We also examine the role of local and federal government, which has clearly responded inadequately and racially to the growing crack epidemic. At least the government looked the other way; in the worst case, the federal government has conspired to help drug smugglers … As a filmmaker, I’m really interested in how the past can help us understand the present. Stories on topics like the crack era, the Black Panther Party, the Freedom Riders, and Emmett Till – if properly told – are critical to understanding who we are as a nation today and affect our ability to shape the future . ”

You can see the trailer below. Crack: Cocaine, Corruption, and Conspiracy will debut on Netflix January 11th. More trailers can be found here for a first look at Netflix’s upcoming series Bridgerton, a period drama Shonda Rhimes.



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Tom Reimann
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Tom Reimann is a writer and comedian and sort of Associate Editor at Collider. He has written for, Mad Magazine, and Some More News and is a co-founder of the podcast network Gamefully Unemployed.

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