Metascore
74

Generally favorable reviews - based on 19 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 19
  2. Negative: 0 out of 19
  1. Reviewed by: Peter Rainer
    Dec 13, 2013
    91
    Interviewed in the film, Juárez journalist Sandra Rodriguez offers up this grim summation: “That these people represent the ideal of success, impunity, and limitless power is symptomatic of how defeated we are as a society.”
  2. Reviewed by: Marc Savlov
    Dec 4, 2013
    89
    Narco Cultura smartly and movingly focuses on the cultural cycle of violence, beginning with a young, Los Angeles-based rapper, Edgar Quintero, whose main job is penning lyrics celebrating the orgiastically violent lifestyles of the drug thugs for his band Buknas de Culiacán.
  3. Reviewed by: Rene Rodriguez
    Nov 21, 2013
    88
    Narco Cultura isn’t a documentary about runaway crime: Its actual subject is far stranger.
  4. Reviewed by: Ernest Hardy
    Nov 19, 2013
    90
    Schwarz's juxtaposition of the human cost of the drug war alongside the glamorization of its henchmen and their brutality is sobering, even depressing.
  5. Reviewed by: Ignatiy Vishnevetsky
    Nov 20, 2013
    100
    If it weren’t for "The Act Of Killing," Narco Cultura would be the year’s queasiest documentary. The film — which counterposes Quintero’s day-to-day life with that of Richi Soto, a crime-scene investigator in Juarez — is both an unflinching record of Mexico’s drug war and an investigation of how violence becomes unreal and glamorized.
  6. Reviewed by: William Goss
    Nov 21, 2013
    81
    A potent encapsulation of how fame and finance beget fear and grief.
  7. Reviewed by: Rodrigo Perez
    Nov 21, 2013
    83
    Narco Cultura is gripping, gruesome and arresting; a disquieting look a pop (sub)-culture phenomenon that is mushrooming all over the United States and Latin America.
  8. Reviewed by: Geoff Berkshire
    Nov 19, 2013
    90
    Narco Cultura is as overwhelming as it is absorbing.
  9. Reviewed by: Steven Boone
    Nov 22, 2013
    100
    Just over the Mexico/U.S. border from Juarez is El Paso, Texas, ranked the safest large city in America three years in a row now. The question that that fact begs is in part why this film is a quietly subversive masterpiece.

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