Filmmaker Bringing Documentary on Drug-Cartel Violence to Arizona

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When independent filmmaker Charlie Minn saw the news of the Tucson shooting rampage on January 8, it drew an ominous likeness to what he's seen in Juarez, Mexico.

"What happened in Tucson a couple of Saturdays ago happens in Juarez every day," Minn says. "Every day."

Minn is unleashing a new documentary film, "8 Murders a Day," chronicling the violence in Juarez -- and in Mexico as a whole -- scheduled in Tempe and Tucson on February 25.

The film, named after the 3,111 Juarez murders in 2010 - eight per day - is "pretty much a 'State of the Union' of what's going on right now in Juarez and all of Mexico," Minn says.

Through a series of interviews with journalists, authors, and college professors, Minn paints the picture of a supposed turf war between the Juarez and Sinoloa drug cartels, and tries to make sense of the seemingly senseless violence.

"Supposedly the drug cartels split apart, and now they're fighting over this critical smuggling route through El Paso," Minn says. "I say 'supposedly' because none of these things are ever investigated."

Juarez was a city that saw less than one murder per day before newly elected President Felipe Calderon waged war against drug cartels in 2006. Minn thinks it's now akin to the Beltway sniper attacks in 2002, "Where at any moment, anyone can get shot in the head."

While the movie focuses on the violence in Juarez, Minn says he's taking aim at the drug cartels, which are not only terrorizing Mexico, but also drifting into the United States.

"The drug cartels have set up operations in over 200 U.S. cities," Minn says. "And I'm sure Arizona is a lot of that."

The murder rate in Juarez has tapered off to six per day thus far in 2011, but Minn says there's no guarantee it'll stay that way.

"I think the situation is going to get worse before it gets any better, because the corruption is three years deep," Minn says. "In my view it's the greatest human-rights disaster in the world today."

Arizonans can catch 8 Murders a Day at the Harkins Valley Art in Tempe and at the Harkins Spectrum 18 in Tucson beginning February 25.



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3 comments
Sophie
Sophie

That sounds like a really interesting documentary. As much as we'd like to look the other way, it does affect us--especially since we live so close to the border.

www.drugrehabcomparison.com

Crazed Country Rebel
Crazed Country Rebel

they should do a tv show on the mexican meth,cocaine and pot dealers on my street. they are all part of a drug cartel but the cops never do nothing to stop it even though plenty of neighbors have gotten in touch with Chuck Williams of the phoenix police cactus precinct drug guys. 8 years later it still goes on and on. and a cop lives on the next street over and i guess he never sees anything either. he drives by everyday on his way to work in his cop suv.what can a good american do to stop this? any ideas?

Matthew Hendley
Matthew Hendley

CCR: Shoot me an e-mail; I'd like to talk to you about that. matthew.hendley@phoenixnewtimes.com

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