Where to Watch "Traffic"


Directed by

Steven Soderbergh

Lila Sommers
Lila Sommers
· 7 min read

Who's in it?

Michael Douglas

Michael Douglas

Benicio del Toro

Benicio del Toro

Catherine Zeta-Jones

Catherine Zeta-Jones

Don Cheadle

Don Cheadle

Erika Christensen

Erika Christensen

Jacob Vargas

Jacob Vargas

Luis Guzmán

Luis Guzmán

Miguel Ferrer

Miguel Ferrer

Topher Grace

Topher Grace

Dennis Quaid

Dennis Quaid

"Traffic" is a riveting and thought-provoking crime drama that captivated audiences in the year 2000 with its powerful storytelling and a stellar ensemble cast. Directed by Steven Soderbergh, this film shines a harsh spotlight on the intricate web of drug trafficking in the United States and its far-reaching consequences.

Release Date and Director: "Traffic" was released on December 27, 2000, and was masterfully directed by Steven Soderbergh, who is known for his versatility as a filmmaker and has helmed a wide range of acclaimed films.


The film unfolds as a multi-layered narrative, exploring the drug trade from various perspectives. It weaves together three interconnected storylines:

  1. In Tijuana, Mexico, two police officers, Javier Rodriguez (played by Benicio Del Toro) and Manolo Sanchez (played by Jacob Vargas), find themselves entangled in the complex world of cartels and corruption as they attempt to bring down a powerful drug lord.
  2. In San Diego, California, Helena Ayala (played by Catherine Zeta-Jones) is thrust into the drug trade's dark reality when her husband, Carlos (played by Steven Bauer), is arrested. She is determined to protect her family's lifestyle at any cost.
  3. In Cincinnati, Ohio, Robert Wakefield (played by Michael Douglas), a conservative judge appointed as the U.S. drug czar, confronts the challenges and moral dilemmas of the war on drugs, all while dealing with his daughter's growing addiction.

"Traffic" delves into the moral ambiguity of drug enforcement, the impact of addiction on individuals and families, and the insidious influence of the drug trade across borders.

Significance, Themes, and Why You Should Watch:

"Traffic" is a hard-hitting exploration of the drug trade's complexities and the toll it takes on society. The film tackles themes such as addiction, government policies, and the far-reaching consequences of the drug trade.

Its unflinching portrayal of the interconnectedness of characters from various walks of life leaves a lasting impression and serves as a powerful commentary on a pervasive societal issue.

This film is a must-watch for those who appreciate intricate storytelling, nuanced characters, and a deep dive into a critical issue that continues to affect millions of lives.

Where to Stream

United States (US):

There are currently no streaming offers in the US.

  • Streaming Options: Peacock Premium
  • Buying Options: Apple TV, Amazon Video, Google Play Movies, YouTube, Vudu, Microsoft Store, Redbox, DIRECTV, Spectrum On Demand
  • Free Options: None

Australia (AU):

There are currently no streaming offers in the AU.

  • Streaming Options: Amazon Prime Video, Stan, Starz Play Amazon Channel
  • Buying Options: Apple TV, Amazon Video, Google Play Movies, Microsoft Store, YouTube, Fetch TV
  • Free Options: None

United Kingdom (GB):

There are currently no streaming offers in the GB.

  • Streaming Options: Netflix, MGM Amazon Channel, Netflix basic with Ads
  • Buying Options: Amazon Video, Apple TV, Sky Store
  • Free Options: None

Germany (DE):

There are currently no streaming offers in the DE.

  • Streaming Options: Filmlegenden Amazon Channel
  • Buying Options: Apple TV, Amazon Video, Google Play Movies, YouTube, Sky Store, Rakuten TV, maxdome Store, MagentaTV, Chili, LaCinetek
  • Free Options: None

Brazil (BR):

There are currently no streaming offers in the BR.

  • Streaming Options: HBO Max, MGM Amazon Channel
  • Buying Options: Amazon Video, Claro video
  • Free Options: None

Spain (ES):

There are currently no streaming offers in the ES.

  • Streaming Options: Amazon Prime Video, Filmin, Movistar Plus, MGM Amazon Channel
  • Buying Options: Apple TV, Google Play Movies, Amazon Video
  • Free Options: None

France (FR):

There are currently no streaming offers in the FR.

  • Streaming Options: None
  • Buying Options: Apple TV, Google Play Movies, Microsoft Store, YouTube, Canal VOD, Bbox VOD, Amazon Video
  • Free Options: None

Canada (CA):

There are currently no streaming offers in the CA.

  • Streaming Options: Amazon Prime Video
  • Buying Options: Apple TV, Amazon Video, Google Play Movies, YouTube
  • Free Options: None

Production Details:

Directed by Steven Soderbergh, "Traffic" boasts an impressive ensemble cast, including Benicio Del Toro, Michael Douglas, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and Don Cheadle. The screenplay was adapted by Stephen Gaghan from a British miniseries of the same name.

The film was shot in various locations, including California, Ohio, and Mexico, creating an authentic backdrop for the unfolding drama. The production team faced the challenge of capturing the gritty realism of the drug trade and the world of law enforcement, which required meticulous attention to detail.

The film was made with a budget of approximately $46 million and performed admirably at the box office, grossing over $207 million worldwide.

Reception and Awards:

Critical Reception: "Traffic" received widespread critical acclaim. Critics praised the film for its compelling storytelling, exceptional performances, and its unflinching portrayal of the drug trade. It was particularly noted for its non-linear narrative structure and its ability to tackle complex themes with precision.

Audience Reception: Audiences appreciated the film's gripping narrative and the performances of the cast. "Traffic" sparked discussions about the drug trade, addiction, and government policies, further cementing its significance.

Awards and Nominations: "Traffic" received numerous awards and nominations, including four Academy Awards. Steven Soderbergh won the Oscar for Best Director, and Benicio Del Toro earned the Best Supporting Actor award for his role as Javier Rodriguez.

Trivia and Fun Facts:

  • The character of Javier Rodriguez, played by Benicio Del Toro, is based on real-life Mexican law enforcement officer Javier Garcia, who worked undercover to bring down drug cartels.
  • The film's use of color to distinguish between the different storylines (blue for the Ayala family, yellow for the Wakefield family, and green for the Mexican segments) is a visual storytelling device that has been widely praised.
  • "Traffic" has been praised for its authenticity in depicting the drug trade and the challenges faced by those on both sides of the law.

In conclusion, "Traffic" is a gripping and thought-provoking film that tackles the drug trade's complex issues from multiple angles.

With its exceptional performances, powerful storytelling, and impactful themes, it remains a standout in the crime drama genre.

If you seek a movie that delves into the consequences of the drug trade and the moral dilemmas it presents, "Traffic" is a must-watch that continues to resonate with audiences today.

Lila Sommers

About Lila Sommers

Lila is your media maven with a passion for the extraordinary! Spot her at the local bookstore or crafting her own stories on lazy Sunday afternoons. From indie flicks to hidden gem tracks, Lila's knack for weaving words and tunes is unmatched, making her your ultimate companion in the exciting world of media and entertainment.

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