When the movie industry was in its infancy, producers would never dream of giving audiences a criminal that they could root for. Those unscrupulous characters were always meant to be booed and hated, but somewhere along the way the film industry began to glamorize the criminal culture until con-men, killers, and thieves slowly became cultural icons. But no other type of criminal in cinema has been more popular than the drug dealer.
There is something oddly inspiring—though undeniably tragic—about a person raising themselves up from the street to form a multi-million dollar empire. These drug dealers and kingpins have achieved the American dream, and people will always rally behind them, while ignoring the shades of grey that they work in.
This Friday marks the release of Pusher, an English remake of the first installment of Drive director Nicolas Winding Refn’s drug trilogy from the ‘90s and '00s. The original, a crime thriller about a mid-level drug dealer who winds up in serious debt to no-nonsense gangsters, was an absolute landmark in Danish cinema. With memories of Pusher and powder on the brain, Complex lines up The 25 Coolest Drug Dealers In Movies. Try it, you'll like it.
Written by Jason Serafino (@serafinoj1)