New PBS Documentary “Kingdom of Shadows” Looks Inside Mexican Drug War

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New PBS Documentary “Kingdom of Shadows” Looks Inside Mexican Drug War

A new POV documentary entitled “Kingdom of Shadows” premiering on PBS this month takes a candid look inside the cause and effects of Mexico’s drug war as it interacts with the United States.

In the documentary, Emmy-nominated Bernardo Ruiz (Reportero) and founder of Quiet Pictures offers multiple point-of-views on the drug war. He takes on the perspective of a U.S. drug enforcement agent, a Mexican activist, and a former drug smuggler.

The documentary’s summary:

Mexico’s government has been waging a war against the country’s drug cartels, whose territorial fights have left tens of thousands dead. “Kingdom of Shadows,” a POV documentary that comes out this month, looks at the root causes of the violence and the effects of the drug war. NewsHour Weekend Correspondent Ivette Feliciano spoke with director Bernardo Ruiz.

Kingdom of Shadows premiers on PBS on September 19th. You can watch the trailer here. The documentary is also being presented on Latino Public Broadcasting.

The documentary has been “unforgettable” by The New York Times. A review at Slackerwood praised the documentary’s unflinching eye:

“Many documentaries have chronicled the drug war in the U.S. and Mexico, but few have humanized it as poignantly as Kingdom of Shadows. While the film explains some of the politics and history of the endless battle against the drug cartels, it also puts an unforgettable face on the war’s tragic effects by focusing on three people caught up in it.”

Also, check local new sources for special pre-screened events near you.


As I watched the trailer, it was clear that that documentary goes much deeper than the synopsis would imply. It takes a turn down a terrifying path – one that involves corrupt law enforcement and “disappearances were carried out by security forces, by soldiers, and police.”

Also, we go inside a world where the people taken may be innocent, and “five gallons of diesel fuel will disappear you from this Earth.”

~ G. Nathalee Serrels, M.A., Psychology

Related: U.S. Working with China to Ban Designer Drugs

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