Nicolas Cage addresses the camera directly at the start of Lord of War standing in a battle-torn street, with a carpet of bullet casings under his feet and automatic weapons popping off in the distance letting us know that there’s a gun for one out of every 12 people on the planet. This is a problem, but not in the way you or I might think, since he wants to know, How do we arm the other 11? It’s a jaunty joke of an opening, in a deathmask grimace sort of way, and just may lull you into thinking that what lays ahead is a Grand Guignol satire on modern warfare and the soulless arms dealers who fuel it; a M*A*S*H for the lawless post-Cold War years. Alas, such hopes are dashed by the appearance of Jared Leto as the world’s least likely Urkranian-American gunrunner and borscht chef.
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