Cocaine Bear Review

Thursday 2 March 2023

Plot: An oddball group of cops, criminals, tourists and teens converge on a Georgia forest where a huge black bear goes on a murderous rampage after unintentionally ingesting cocaine.

Film: Cocaine Bear

Director: Elizabeth Banks

Writer: Jimmy Warden

Starring: Keri Russell,  Alden Ehrenreich, O'Shea Jackson Jr.

This film was just plain silly except when it wasn’t. For the most part it’s the horror spoof that the trailer promised but at times the film doesn’t fully commit to being as funny as it could be and just feels a bit flat. What it lacks in comedy it makes up for in some brutal kill scenes and a surprisingly endearing subplot in the form of the character Eddie (Alden Ehrenreich), who is grieving his recently deceased wife. 

Eddie along with best friend Daveed (O'Shea Jackson Jr) have been sent by crime boss Syd (Ray Liotta) to retrieve a plane worth of missing cocaine that has been scattered across aptly named Blood Mountain, but little do they know; someone got there first. A trio of troublemaking teens, a park ranger, two lost children and mother on a mission to find them make up the rest of the cast of the film, though many we don’t learn much about before they meet a gruesome end. 

Eddie and Daveed are the stars, and their side of the story was the one I was more invested in. Parallel to them and dealing with the drugged-up predator are Dee Dee (Brooklyn Prince) and Henry (Christian Convery), children who have made the trip to the mountain alone to see the waterfalls. When Dee Dee’s mother (Keri Russel) realises what’s happened, she enlists help of Ranger Liz (Margo Martindale) and Peter (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) to help her find them. There really are a lot of characters, and of them all it’s only really Eddie who gets any back story, he’s the self-aware horror movie character and has some great dialogue but that only highlights how flat the rest of the interlocking stories are. 

I didn’t really like or dislike this film, and it loses a half a star because the story doesn’t feel like it really ends, the film itself ends without any conclusion other than the remining characters go home, the number of survivors was also surprising. It’s possibly been left deliberately open for an unnecessary sequel, but the CGI was done well so I can confidently say worse things have been made. 

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