Cocaine Bear - One of the most intense bear movies ever!

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Cocaine Bear - One of the most intense bear movies ever!

Postby TheStuboy » March 7th, 2023, 11:46 pm

The Melanie and I just got back from AMC 16 in Coon Rapids. Our movie of choice tonight: Cocaine Bear.

Cocaine Bear is Elizabeth Banks (yes, the same Elizabeth Banks who was barely the bad guy in the shitty Power Rangers movie) third film she has directed. She has also directed Pitch Perfect 2 and the 2019 turd reboot of Charlie's Angels. This time, she tackles the horror/comedy/all-over-the-fucking-place genre with Cocaine Bear.

The film stars Keri Russell, Ice Cube's son O'Shea Jackson Jr., Alden Ehrenreich, Ray Liotta, and the super wah lady neighbor from Netflix's The Watcher among others.

Brief plot explanation because there really isn't much of a plot: (SPOILERS HERE)
1985 Tennessee, A stu drug dealer with a plane too heavy plans to skydive in the woods while dumping cocaine. Unfortunately his parachute doesn't open. Well, a bear stumbles upon the cocaine and starts going crazy after ingesting it. A mom leaves her kid at home to go to work. While she's away, the kid sneaks out with another kid to go paint a waterfall in the woods. Meanwhile at a ranger station, three stus are scoping out the place to rob it, and the poor wah lady ranger. Their plan goes awry when two drug dealers working with Scary Liotta show up to retrieve the cocaine their stu partner dropped out of the plane. A perfect storm happens when the cocaine induced bear shows up and starts shinging the shit out of the humans. It's a fun time.


I had a hypothesis about this film that it would be pulled from theaters, but that hypothesis was obviously wrong. I knew going in that I was to expect a wild ride but goddamn this film delivers that. From the time the bear overdoses on cocaine, the shit hits the fan. So you've probably heard that this film is a horror movie right? Well it's also a comedy, in a sense. A dark comedy. In fact it can't quite figure out that balance at times, which one it wants to be. It's also at times very absurd. Like holy balls absurd. There are jump scares, and the Melanies knew it was coming but she knows how far she flew out of the theater seat. She knows. I saw it coming too.

There are a few times when the film is predictable, but the tone isn't. The film is all over the fucking place. It's actually kind of a mess, the more I think about it, but nevermind that. Turn your brain off and watch the intense shings happen. You might grip your seat, you might fly off the seat, you might shit your pants. Hell, you might even laugh a bit at how absurd it is. You might see Scary Liotta, and be sad that he left us way too early. He doesn't have much of a part, except the end.

There's one particular sequence where I almost started getting motion sickness, because the pacing is insane and the action is just intense as fuck. It was like going on a rollercoaster. There are other sequences where this film clearly tells you not to take it so seriously. It's based on a true story, but the majority of the actual story is fabricated. The only details we do know are that a dude died jumping out of a plane full of cocaine and a bear got into it when it hit the ground. That part really happened. The rest of the movie is entirely fiction.

There are characters I felt bad for, and there are characters I didn't care for. The film is only 95 minutes long but it felt longer. There are a couple of parts where they could've trimmed the fat, and there were a few sequences I would've handled better. This isn't so much a spoiler but kind of an observation: people become stu in this film at some point and they have plenty of opportunity to do something but they don't, and the ending feels kind of muddy as a result. Also, the ending is very dark. Not dark as in story-wise, but dark as in cinematography. It's hard to see some of the action and I felt like we were kind of jipped by that. As I said, the film is very uneven, and looking at the reviews, I can say I'm not the only one who noticed it. The tone is all over the place. It doesn't help that the cast is bigger than it should be. There are a few characters that could've been cut.

The CGI bear looks good most times, but there are a few landscape shots that stick out with bad CGI. The film is supposedly set in Tennessee. It looks beautiful, scenery-wise. It reminded me of the mountains we drove through in 2021 on the TN/GA border. Wikipedia says the film was shot in Ireland, but the actual forest featured in the film is on the TN/GA border, so I was right. The film was dedicated to Ray Liotta who died last year.

Audience score
We saw this in a nearly packed theater, which is strange for a Tuesday night. Some stus sitting next to me wouldn't SHUT THE FUCK UP. At one point, in the middle of the movie, some asshole's phone rang. I will say the audience participation in this film was way more than I've seen with any other films in recent memory. People were laughing, jeering, jumping, and being stupid during the film. I saw some asshole straight up litter on the way out to the car. Fucking idiots. Out of 100, the audience score is 60/100. I hate seeing movies with stupid people sitting near me.

Overall, the film is fun. Note to people sensitive to gore, this film has a lot. It's pretty violent but mostly done in a cartoony way in places. It has its moments of comedy, especially earlier in the film. The acting is okay, but I was disappointed with the kid actors. I did feel bad for a couple of the characters. Some of their motivations however aren't very clear, nor is their reasoning. I also feel like the film was longer, and subplots were probably cut, particularly with the park ranger, and Alden Ehrenreich's characters. It feels like pieces are missing.

If you're in the mood for a lot of jump scares and can forgive a thin line of white cocaine plot, this might be the film for you. I'm glad I saw it but I wouldn't call it the best movie I've ever seen.
Cocaine Bear gets a 2.6969696969 out of 5 star rating. My main gripe is how uneven the tone is. I compared it to Snakes On A Plane.

Hey you, come down here. I just want to do another line. That's all. Oh and I want to shing!
This scene gave me motion sickness. It's absurd, over the top, and that's okay. Sometimes movies can do that.
"I won, you losht, get ushed to it shon"
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