The Disney+ Crime Comedy On Streaming That Exposed Real Government Corruption

By TeeJay Small | Published

These days, government corruption and crime have become part of the daily news cycle, with political mudslinging tarnishing the careers and reputations of both sides of the political aisle. One film, 2016’s War Dogs, examines a major scandal that unfolded during America’s decades-long war on terror, which shaped the way the country does government contracts and arms deals to this day. The film has an all-star cast, cutting social commentary, and a screenplay that is downright hilarious, despite the infuriating truth about white-collar crimes.

Form The Director Of Joker

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War Dogs was written and directed by Todd Phillips, who was best known at the time for his work on blockbuster comedy films such as Old School, Due Date, and The Hangover trilogy. War Dogs clearly represents a shift in Phillips’ filmmaking scope, with the director hammering down on more serious material before ultimately stepping into serious dramatic territory with 2019’s Joker. The screenplay for the film is based on a true story of political corruption, outlined in a 2011 Rolling Stone article titled “The Stoner Arms Dealers: How Two American Kids Became Big-Time Weapons Traders.”

The Iraq War

The cast of War Dogs is highly impressive, with Jonah Hill and Miles Teller in the leading roles, alongside a supporting ensemble of Ana de Armas, Kevin Pollak, Bradley Cooper, and many others. The film, which takes place in 2005, centers on a massage therapist named David Packouz, who is convinced to go into business with his old friend Efraim Diveroli, selling small quantities of weapons and ammunition to the United States government to use in the ongoing war in Iraq.

Due to a previous corruption scandal, the military-industrial complex allows all government bids to be made through a public website, offering Efraim an opportunity to underbid small-time contractors for minor orders.

A Deal With The Devil

As the bumbling duo continue to work their way through the ranks, they become embroiled in bigger and bigger arms deals, eventually causing them to personally travel to the Middle East to retrieve a shipment of ammunition that has been blocked by an embargo.

Eventually, the war dogs managed to secure a $300 million Afghan deal, which calls for over 100 million rounds of AK-47 ammo, following a global shortage. To secure the ammo, David and Efraim connect with a controversial weapons dealer named Henry Girard, who has been barred from working with the U.S. government due to his shady history, which has landed him on a terrorist watchlist.

Forever Changed U.S. Policy

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Girard offers David and Efraim access to a massive stockpile of arms in an Albanian warehouse, but nothing ever seems to go as planned. As War Dogs builds to its thrilling conclusion, the arms-dealing empire crumbles in spectacular fashion, resulting in major changes to government policy regarding the future of sub-contracting.

Critics Loved It

The film impressed critics and made over $86 million at the global box office against an estimated production budget of only $40 million. For those interested in catching the fascinating film, War Dogs is currently streaming on the Hulu section of Disney+. The section is still in beta and requires an account on both streamers to use.