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Noriega: God's Favorite (2000)

TV Movie  -   -  Drama  -  6 June 2001 (Italy)
6.3
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The story of Panamanian general Manuel Antonio 'Tony' Noriega, whose meteoric career, from utter poverty, as a soldier and CIA informant who also served as source to various other powers ... See full summary »

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Title: Noriega: God's Favorite (TV Movie 2000)

Noriega: God's Favorite (TV Movie 2000) on IMDb 6.3/10

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
...
Nuncio
...
Vicky Amador
...
President Nicky Barletta
...
Felicidad Noriega
...
Major Giroldi
...
Colonel Diaz-Herrera
Sabi Dorr ...
Irwin
John Verea ...
Father Jorge
...
Mark
...
Drug Dealer
Michael Sorich ...
Jorge Luis Abreu ...
Witch Doctor
...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Susan Africa ...
Adela Giroldi
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Storyline

The story of Panamanian general Manuel Antonio 'Tony' Noriega, whose meteoric career, from utter poverty, as a soldier and CIA informant who also served as source to various other powers and even the Colombian drug mafia he claims to fight valiantly to please CIA director and later U.S. president Bush Sr., starts when he confesses to a priest, reminiscing how he has experienced such luck that he believes himself to be God's favorite- each time he takes more risks people tell him he went too far, but always seems to get away with it. In his marriage, he is constantly unfaithful to Felicidad 'Fela', notably with his mistress Vicky Amador. After public opinion, domestic and U.S., was scandalize by the brutal torture, rape and decapitation of generally respected Dr. Hugo Spadafora, he sees to it that the blame goes to President Nicky Barletta, only one year in office. When he feels forced to destroy a drug lab of the Medellin cartel he accepted payment from, even Fidel Castro tells him a ... Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Drama

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Release Date:

6 June 2001 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Noriega  »

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Near the end of the movie, the Nuncio warns Noriega that if he isn't careful, he'll end up like Mussolini, strung up by his heels. Bob Hoskins, who played Noriega, had already met that fate in the 1985 movie biography of Mussolini, whom he played. See more »

Quotes

Manuel Noriega: You want some friendly advice? I suggest you kill yourself.
Major Giroldi: That is against my religion.
Manuel Noriega: [smiles unpleasantly] Then give me your weapon, and place yourself in God's hands...
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Bites off a lot -- and then spends most of its time lightly choking!
24 October 2005 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

When a TV movie premiers on BBC2 (a minority UK channel) after midnight you take it is a read that this is not going to be very good -- and I wasn't proved far wrong. While title lead Bob Hoskins does his admirable best with a tough part for him to play physically the rest is just a tick list of all the events that formed his later life.

Having read up on the subject it is all there, present and correct: Drugs, corruption, the Contra affair and Ollie North, black magic, marriage problems. Not to mention the US invasion of his country of Panama and his hiding out in a church embassy.

However I wouldn't have liked to re-tell the story from what I saw here!

Naturally we are viewing the Third World from a First World perspective (well I am anyway) and that isn't easy. Noriega learnt the rules from others and while a cruel and despotic man, he wasn't a fool. Why -- he questions -- does the USA love drugs so much "does the gringo have no soul?"

(The people who produce/traffic drugs often laugh at the people that consume them -- for them they view the product for what it is, a lucrative poison.)

You'd be hard pushed to get this is all in if you spent a 100 million dollars and spread it over a mini series. This is a 120 minute film and while I don't know the budget from what I see on the screen it is obviously on the low side.

Dictators (let us take the "corrupt" as read) are always filmed in ultra close-up showing their rage and frustration, ready to do anything at anytime (this is why they feature in so many films!), but General Noriega is also shown as a bit of a hen-pecked clown. The boy from the wrong side of the tracks who, with a chip on both shoulders, climbed to the top while -- strangely -- partly controlled by the catholic church and a love of cheap sexual thrills.

(The movie seems to be suggesting some kind of bisexuality that I hadn't heard about before.)

A man who had a love-hate relationship with America and America responding by having a love-hate relationship with him.

While this movie seems to have it all: Power, drugs, corruption, explosions, rise-and fall, it actually has very little. I viewed the whole matter with cold detachment wondering if the Noriega was living in Panama or some kind of private Disneyland.

All-in-all a bit of a failure -- but an extra star of being a brave failure.


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