Cocaine Bear does God’s work


Courtesy of Universal Pictures

Cocaine Bear had the high of a lifetime, rampaging and killing people, despite it being loosely based on a true story.

by Kyle Werner, Feature Editor

It was all about committing to the bit. Between the great work from their marketing department and the hilarity of the concept of a bear rampaging while high on cocaine, I had to commit to the bit. 

The movie kind of followed the same idea. 

It was based on a true story: In 1985, cocaine was dropped out of a plane into Chattahoochee National Forest and Andrew Thorton attempted to parachute, which didn’t deploy, and splatted onto a driveway in Nashville, Tennessee (with cocaine and Gucci loafers), which effectively killed him. 

In the movie, there was some 800 lbs of cocaine dropped out of the plane, left to the sheer forces of nature. 

Those forces? A black bear. Which consumed millions of dollars worth of cocaine. 

In actuality, when this occurred in 1985, the bear pretty much immediately died. It ate around 35 lbs worth of cocaine, or $15 million worth of the drug, packing its stomach completely to the brim and probably causing an immediate overdose. 

So, the bear died and Andrew Thornton died. But that’s not enough material for a movie, so naturally, screenwriter Jimmy Warden and Director Elizabeth Banks revved up the story. 

It amounted to 11 total deaths and constant blood splattering or detached limbs flying across the screen.

The movie basically followed the experience of the bear between two kids and the drug lords that were trying to recover the cocaine that was sprinkled about Chattahoochee. 

And, of course, it got messy. Not even a full ten minutes in and you see Cocaine Bear kill a hiker and throw her leg at her fiance. 

Then the kids decided to skip school to go “paint the waterfall” and the girl’s mom went on an adventure to go find them. But that got gruesome really quickly, of course. 

The rest of the movie basically followed suit, with a few side plots of the park ranger defending the park from delinquent teenagers (two of the three died) and the two kids. 

It ended on a pretty good note, the drug lords went their separate ways, the kids survived, the family was reunited and Cocaine Bear and her cubs lived happily ever after.

I can’t be mad with the movie, honestly. Its production quality was actually pretty high. The CGI used for the spilling of intestines or a gunshot to the face (and so on and so forth) was much better than most CGI. I did have to look away a few times because it simply was that realistic (specifically the bear cubs playing with intestines and the splattering of brains), but I think that was all just the commitment to the bit of the oddity of “Cocaine Bear.” 

Honestly, I would probably watch it again now that I know what I’ve gotten myself into, but it’s not really for the faint of heart or weak of stomach. 

It’s really just a movie about committing to the bit, and they did that well. The marketing department did a great job, and so did the production crew. 

“Cocaine Bear” is exactly what it sounds like. A bear rampaging on a cocaine high.