Pin It

TRUE CRIME | Kid Cannabis 

click to enlarge Actors Jonathan Daniel Brown (left) and Kenny Wormald as the Coeur d'Alene men who made millions on pot in the early 2000s.
  • Actors Jonathan Daniel Brown (left) and Kenny Wormald as the Coeur d'Alene men who made millions on pot in the early 2000s.

It's been more than a decade since Nate Norman helped turn a group of teenagers and twentysomethings from Coeur d'Alene into one of the most profitable marijuana-smuggling gangs the region had ever seen. Now the story of these unlikely drug kingpins who made millions running pot across the Canadian border is on the big screen with the release of Kid Cannabis, adapted from a 2005 Inlander article by former staff writer Kevin Taylor.

Written and directed by John Stockwell, best known for his work on the sexy surf flick Blue Crush, the film mostly stays true to what was reported in Taylor's story and an expansive Rolling Stone piece by Mark Binelli. But there's plenty of movie magic at play: You don't actually see Coeur d'Alene or its lake — the film was shot in Victoria, B.C.

That shouldn't dissuade your interest in this intriguing story, which ultimately resulted, albeit tangentially, in the murder of 20-year-old Brendan Butler, a rival CdA pot dealer who hired hitmen to wipe out Norman's crew. A lot of the film is devoted to the extravagance of Norman and company's lifestyle after they were rolling in cash (lots of parties, boats, boobs and luxury SUVs).

In the course of its screen time, Kid Cannabis is thrilling, funny and in the case of Butler, tragic. Perhaps most startling, the film brings to light how much a decade has changed the war on drugs, especially when it comes to pot. These kids were crossing a heavily wooded international border on foot in order to score quality weed for their customers, but it's hard to imagine they'd have much of a market in 2014, when the stuff is perfectly legal just a few minutes drive from Coeur d'Alene. ♦

Kid Cannabis opens in Spokane at the Magic Lantern Theatre on Fri, April 25; also currently playing at the Hayden Discount Cinemas in Hayden.


Kid Cannabis
Rated NR · 2014
Director: John Stockwell
Producer: Michael Becker, Gordon Bijelonic, Corey Large, Datari Turner, Mia Chang, Alison Lee, Alan Pao and Bic Tran
Cast: Jonathan Brown, Kenny Wormald, Ron Perlman, Aaron Yoo, John McGinley, Corey Large, Bryce Hodgson and Lochlyn Munro

Now Playing

Sorry there are no upcoming showtimes for Kid Cannabis

  • Pin It

Latest in Arts & Culture

  • In the Line of Fire
  • In the Line of Fire

    The Spokane Firefighters Memorial Project reminds us of those who died in their duty to protect
    • Dec 17, 2014
  • Through His Eyes
  • Through His Eyes

    Dean Davis' show at the MAC is a survey of the region's artistic talents
    • Dec 17, 2014
  • For Your Consideration
  • For Your Consideration

    Creepy games, financial podcast pick and an important book
    • Dec 17, 2014
  • More »


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Sun | Mon | Tue | Wed | Thu | Fri
A Christmas Carol

A Christmas Carol @ University of Idaho Hartung Theater

Sat., Dec. 20, 7:30-9 p.m.

All of today's events | Staff Picks

Most Commented On

  • Captain Planet

    Recycle Man is making the world a little better for people and mascots alike, one bottle at a time
    • Dec 10, 2014
  • Swipe right for love

    Technology has totally revolutionized romance. Or maybe it hasn't.
    • Dec 17, 2014
  • More »

Top Tags in
Culture & Food


Last Word



for your consideration

© 2014 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation