In February of 2010, I set out on a journey to two major port cities on the southern Pacific coast of Colombia accompanied by an NYU colleague and a close friend native to the region. We were granted special access to Malaga Naval base, where we photographed and explored narco submarines and torpedoes confiscated by the Colombian Navy. What struck me most were the realities of those ensnared by this world. Over the next two years, I returned to the homes of these individuals and listened to their tales and deeply personal accounts of how their lives remain entrenched in the drug trade.
A region known for political unrest and organized crime, it’s no secret that the drug trade continues to have a staggering effect over its people. We documented numerous accounts of daily confrontations with paramilitaries, guerrillas, and criminal drug traffickers. I asked a man from Tumaco if he could see an end to the turmoil in Colombia and he responded, “Yes…but only in my dreams.”
Manos Sucias is not another movie that glamorizes cocaine and the drug trade, rather it’s a film that unveils the realities of exploitation of the children, impoverished fishermen, and families who are forced to be a part of this world. We made Manos Sucias to captivate viewers through action and suspense, while giving them a glimpse into the oft-neglected troubles that plague the people of this region.
– Manos Sucias Film Director: JOSEF KUBOTA WLADYKA
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