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Plot: BC's illegal marijuana trade industry has evolved into a business giant, dubbed by some involved as 'The Union', Commanding upwards of $7 billion Canadian annually. With up to 85% of 'BC Bud' being exported to the United States, the trade has become an international issue. Follow filmmaker Adam Scorgie as he demystifies the underground market and brings to light how an industry can function while remaining illegal. Through growers, police officers, criminologists, economists, doctors, politicians and pop culture icons, Scorgie examines the cause and effect nature of the business - an industry that may be profiting more by being illegal. Runtime: 104 mins Release Date: 31 Dec 2006
Warning: The Following Film Contains Dangerous Truths and Will Lead to Rational Thinking and Outrage. (by zippyflynn2)
There are a variety of excellent films available that expose the idiocy, lies, hysteria and underlying self-serving and enormously profitable financial motivations behind drug prohibition in America, specifically the current War on Drugs, of which marijuana is the prime target. This is one of the best as it is one of the most comprehensive as well as nicely edited and thoughtfully produced.This is not a stoner film, a statement of "I have a right to get to stoned and no one should infringe on this in and of itself", even though this is a perfectly valid argument if you believe at <more>
all in real freedom and the US Constitution. Rather, this is a documentary that exposes the horrific, astronomical price the US pays to continue the current marijuana prohibition.Sadly, this film will be, for the most part, preaching to the choir. Few who have opposing views will watch it and be swayed to examine the fallacies within their belief system. Not because of the presentation or production value of the statements within the film, but rather man and woman's ability to continue to believe the most ridiculous and destructive foolishness regardless of the amount of overwhelming logic and reality that contradicts their beliefs. The billions of those who feverishly practice religions of intolerance and other faith/magic based beliefs as well as many of the horrific conditions in America presently, such as the record setting Prisons for Profit system and other tragedies are ample proof as to the idiotic self and other destructive nature of so-called humanity.Watch this film anyhow, whether it outrages you or just is another piece of evidence as further proof of man's and woman's squandered opportunity to have a great society. It is quite well done and will provide you food for thought, that is if you dare to think.
Masterpiece yet pretty much unknown to the general public (by vivoenelcampo)
First of all, be warned, i am a pot lover, stoner and marijuana legalization advocate. Also i'm a well educated fourth year law student, with deep knowledge in history, mathematics, politics, and law. That duality that some people cant understand, and believe impossible is exactly what this film shows, am from Chile so my English may not be perfect, please spare me. Everyone, pro-legalization anti-legalization and even those who don't care should watch this film, the sheer amount of backup information is astonishing, everything that is said in the movie is accompanied by a source, so <more>
the movie presents an undeniable truth.That would be OK for most documentaries but this one goes further, its is fast paced, has a great soundtrack specially if you're watching it high, treats a great variety of subjects, history, medical dangers, medical benefits, legislation, etc.Be warned, it will change your point of view, if you are a pro-legalization it will strength it, if you are close-minded it will open it, so be ready to learn the truth, and open your mind in a heavily entertaining way.
I've watched many documentaries about our country's disastrous drug war, and about marijuana specifically, and this one is easily the best. Fact-based, extremely informative, high production value, great interviews, entertaining presentation; nothing was missed here.The film certainly is not ambivalent about our current marijuana policies; the message is clear that drastic changes are called-for. However, it does not present this case dogmatically or condescendingly. Also, this piece is not simply a case against the drug war. Around halfway into the film, the focus narrows down onto <more>
the incredibly huge illicit marijuana business in British Columbia. In fact, the movie's title refers to an informal name used to identify the various industries and individuals involved, either knowingly or unknowingly, in the marijuana business in BC. Very enlightening stuff that I was largely unaware of, even with the amount of interest I have in the topic.The only downside is the relative lack of exposure this film has had; I had never even heard of it until very recently, even though it was released in 2007. However, it is available on Netflix both on disc and instant streaming , and hopefully people will slowly discover this hidden masterpiece. Highly recommended.
An indictment against freedom in America. (by Nickolas52)
I was pleasantly surprised by this documentary. As a non-user of cannabis viewing what had to be just another pro-cannabis argument, I had low expectations. My expectations were wrong.This documentary has about as much to say about North American Society as a whole as it has to say about the legalization of marijuana. Taken in its greater context, the documentary is about how Society allows limits of personal freedom to evolve. The documentary uses the example of the 1920's Prohibition on alcohol to demonstrate how Society can change to allow something within its perceived bounds of <more>
decency, for which it previously tossed people in jail. I have seen in my own lifetime the legalization of homosexuality, which also finds its roots in Canada, initiated as it was by a visionary Prime Minister named Pierre Trudeau. What a less tolerant society once restricted through oppression to dark, secret places, it is now allowing freely, even if it is all still happening in dark, secret places. If Society had finally recognized that these prohibited things could not be eliminated, Society may have also recognized that they would at least not be promoted by legalizing them. Not everyone is happy with either societal change, but the majority are. We are now seeing the evolution of acceptance of cannabis in Society. But that's not the point. To me the documentary is not about cannabis. It is about disparities of freedom.The point is driven home by an exposé on the United States penal system, a system run to a great extent by private corporations who's primary interest, by definition, is to make money. What the documentary helps the objective viewer to realize is America's is not as free a Society as many, if not most, others in the world, and it helps the objective viewer realize, if chillingly, the reason why.
Off the top, let me first say I was very entertained by this film and found it very informative and a little thought provoking. However, as a documentary, it has some issues.First, let me get the 'cons' out of the way. I will say the production values are low, however, some of the best documentaries are shot on shoe string budgets by people that really just have something they want to say! The music can be too prominent, monotonous, and a little irritating at times. It also doesn't fit the subject matter at points. Stock footage is a little over done, and over edited. Also, you <more>
really know right off the bad where the film makers stand on the subject matter! It can feel quite one sided at times, and can present some of the street people being interviewed as naive with uneducated points of view.However, all that being said, there were a LOT of well made points that came up! The film makers take you inside the operations, and show you first hand how this world operates. He interviews some big names, and asks a lot of the big questions and covers a lot of areas that we never quite hear about.Even if it's not the best documentary and I'm not even sure how that standard could even be set... this is one that you should take in! It'll be worth your time!
Before watching this film, I considered myself politically neutral in the ongoing debate about the benefits and harmfulness of marijuana use. If it's legalized, whatever; I won't use it. If it's kept illegal, I'm not losing any sleep, I thought. One of the debates that becomes nudged into the foreground when discussing marijuana legalization is do laws making drugs illegal escalate the use of said drugs or decrease them? I believe they do. I know more people in my life that smoke marijuana than are bullied at school. I can say with almost complete confidence that marijuana and <more>
alcohol use are more of a problem than bullying at suburban high schools. Which brings me to my first question; can the two be helping each other? The Union: The Business Behind Getting High opens with a four minute history of cannabis in America. We learn that cannabis, also called hemp or industrial hemp the kind of hemp you can not get "high" from , was the largest crop in America up until around 1937. It was the most durable, robust fiber the world has ever known. It was used predominately in paper, medicine, fabrics, and lighting oil, and the very first marijuana/hemp law ever passed through legislation demanded farmers to use it for its commonality and reliability. Even the paper the Declaration of Independence is printed on is hemp paper; the kind of paper that, through centuries, does not yellow and does not destroy or lessen forest-count in the United States.But back to the history of the plant. In the mid-1930's, something called "yellow journalism" began to take effect on the American people. It was right around the time World War II and the Holocaust began to come up, as well, so the form of persuading the public without much substance and factual evidence, also known as propaganda, became more apparent in the life of not only Germany and parts of Europe, but the United States as well. When the 1936, notoriously lampooned film Reefer Madness, a completely heavy-handed and preachy film used as a scare-tactic for teens and marijuana use, was released, the government began acting on the production and use of hemp. The 1937 Marijuana Tax Act made it so using hemp would implement a heavy tax on farmers, to the point where other resources such as cotton were looked at as a substitute. Marijuana prices climbed, you needed a stamp to grow it - which the government wasn't giving out - and thus, by 1948, hemp and marijuana were illegal for almost no reason at all.This brings us to the question of the legitimacy and the success of prohibition of drugs in the United States; does it really work or does it erect greater, more impenetrable problems? When alcohol was outlawed in the United States, speakeasies became more popular, organized crime by several names like Al Capone and Lucky Luciano were turning up everywhere, and the ability to sell alcohol for record prices was astronomical. If one were to do roughly fifteen minutes of genuine research on marijuana prohibition in the United States, the facts are there and the effects are similar. By closing something off to the public, you open a whole new world where crime and lawlessness can take place, and prices can be artificially inflated by the seller, who makes 100% profit on something you were too stupid to see the benefits in.The Union boldly destroys most of the rumors about marijuana use, populated by the ignorant and uninformed, by using cold, hard facts. For example, the idea that marijuana kills brain cells or stunts them in any way is completely false. A study involving monkeys was conducted, where the monkeys ingested marijuana and not only was brain cell loss apparent, but death wasn't too far away either. Why was that? The monkeys wore gas masks and injected with a large amount of marijuana, that smoking several joints at a time wouldn't equate to, to the point where they died of suffocation. The film also brings up the very rational argument of questioning the legality of tobacco/nicotine/alcohol products, substances that have proved to be addictive, lethal, and cancerous, but not marijuana. So, it just leads us to the question that if the U.S. government wants so badly to protect its citizens from doom and uncertain turmoil, why are they paying money to restrict a plant with proved health benefits, untold material benefits, and one that has shown to be relatively harmless compared to legal pharmaceuticals? The simple answer is marijuana's naturalism. Because the government has the pharmaceutical corporations in their back pocket, both institutions are well aware that the legalization of marijuana would lead to record-low profits and a lesser dependency on one of the most profitable divisions in history. Why pay astronomically high prices for ambiguous medicines with side effects quite possibly worse than what you have when there's a natural drug you can grow, without fear of legal trouble or persecution, for pennies on the dollar? The answer is simple and rational and that's exactly what the corporations and the government want to steer the American people away from. Unfortunately, this will likely be a film that is standing inside an empty room with a high-auditory echo, with the only ones picking up its messages being those who do not need to hear old evidence and reiterated points for the umpteenth time. This is a film that will inevitably preach to the choir, the people its already had on its side. Those who need to seek this film out are the on-the-fencers, like I was, and those who have long been socially ignorant to the concept of marijuana, assuming its illegal status is for a justifiable reason.