Peter Brunette

Peter Brunette is a professor of film studies and the director of the film studies program at Wake Forest University. He has written and edited many books on film, including Wong Kar-wai and Martin Scorsese: Interviews.

Recent Articles

Snow Job

I n Bruce Porter's 1993 nonfiction book Blow, the life of George Jung--his rise from high school dropout in the working-class Boston suburb of Weymouth, Massachusetts, to major 1970s trafficker of Colombian cocaine with $60 million stashed away in a Panamanian bank, and his subsequent earthshaking fall--is treated mostly as the bizarre, occasionally exciting story it is. Porter bases his meat-and-potatoes journalistic account on extensive interviews with this notorious American cousin of the Medellín drug cartel and with the police officers and FBI agents who busted him. The book's chief fascination lies in its spirited recounting of the hundreds of little twists and turns Jung's life took over a 25-year period. It comes as no big surprise that much of this complex, sometimes contradictory biographical detail disappears in the film version of Blow or that the film reduces the book's rich cast of idiosyncratic Hispanics to standard-issue caricature. A movie, after all, doesn't have the...