Cast and credits
The documentary explores several intriguing questions: how was Matthews been able to operate for several years without being detected? What was his relationship with La Cosa Nostra? Why did the CIA get involved in the Matthews investigation? Why has the mystery of his disappearance been so difficult to solve?
Born in 1944 in Durham, North Carolina, Matthews left his hometown when he was a teenager, going first to Philadelphia and then to New York City. By the early 1970 s, Frank Matthews had become America's biggest drug kingpin. His organization, headquartered in Brooklyn, stretched across more than 20 states, and he became the only Black gangster to establish direct ties to the French Connection heroin pipeline. To quote a federal prosecutor assigned to the Matthews case, Matthews was a pioneering giant of drug distribution."
Matthews organization eventually outgrew even the Italian Mafia, and when he built himself a mansion in Staten Island's most exclusive neighborhood (and across the street from mobsters Paul Castellano and Three Finger Brown), he found himself on the verge of a war with La Cosa Nostra. Matthews also battled militant Black Muslims for control in the streets of New Jersey and Philadelphia as he built his empire. The $15 to 20 million dollars he disappeared with is roughly equivalent to $100 million in today's cash. What happened to Frank Matthews? That s the most intriguing questionin organized crime history, said Chepesiuk, who has spent five years researching the Frank Matthews story. Despite one of the largest manhunts in US history, there is no proof as to whether he is alive or dead.
Two out of every three of us are overweight. Cases of diabetes are exploding, especially amongst our younger population. About half of us are taking at least one prescription drug. Major medical operations have become routine, helping to drive health care costs to astronomical levels. Heart disease, cancer and stroke are the country's three leading causes of death, even though billions are spent each year to "battle" these very conditions. Millions suffer from a host of other degenerative diseases.
Could it be there's a single solution to all of these problems? A solution so comprehensive but so utterly straightforward, that it's mind-boggling that more of us haven't taken it seriously?
FORKS OVER KNIVES examines the profound claim that most, if not all, of the so-called "diseases of affluence" that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by rejecting our present menu of animal-based and processed foods. The major storyline in the film traces the personal journeys of a pair of pioneering yet under-appreciated researchers, Dr. T. Colin Campbell and Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn.
MAD AS HELL documents the tumultuous, at times hilarious and altogether astonishing trajectory of Cenk Uygur, The Young Turks' main host and founder, as he traverses from unknown Public Access TV host to internet sensation by way of YouTube. When he ventures into national television by landing the 6 PM time slot on MSNBC, Cenk's uncensored brand of journalism is compromised as he becomes a thorn in the side of traditional news media; his unwavering dedication to speaking the truth puts him at the very nexus of the battle between new and old media, and makes MAD AS HELL not only entertaining, but incredibly timely as well.