Robert Chacon is the La Crescenta and La Canada Flintridge reporter
for the News-Press, the Leader’s sister publication.
In “Veronica Guerin,” the namesake character, played by Cate
Blanchett, risks her life and that of her family to expose a gang of
drug dealers in 1990s Ireland.
The investigative journalist endures threats, beatings and is even
shot by one of the gang members, but she remains undeterred in
putting their story in the headlines.
Director Joel Schumacher is equally undeterred, rarely straying
from his focus on Guerin’s investigation. Schumacher doggedly pursues
Guerin the way she pursues the drug dealers. At just under two hours,
the film is not long enough to delve into every aspect of Guerin’s
Ultimately, this is why the film succeeds in its treatment of the
story. The real-life events are left unadulterated and pure, much
like the heroin being sold by the drug dealer’s in the film.
The film remains compelling because Guerin’s story is not treated
as a typical Hollywood vehicle meant to translate into large
Hollywood films usually treat drug use with gratuitous scenes of
abuse, focusing on the immediate after effects of the high. “Fear and
Loathing in Las Vegas,” “Trainspotting” and “Requiem for a Dream” are
examples of this.
In this film, Guerin symbolizes the Herculean efforts taken by
individuals on behalf of justice.
* “Veronica Guerin” is rated R for violence, language and some