This film, which stars Jeremy Renner, is based on the true story of Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Gary Webb. In 1996, Webb published a three-part 20,000 word feature in the San Jose Mercury News under the headline “Dark Alliance”.

The investigative series delved into the Iran-Contra affair where the CIA, during the tenure of Ronald Reagan as president, used funds raised through clandestine ties with cocaine traffickers in Central America to support arms shipments to Iran (when it was involved in a war with Iraq) and right-wing Contra rebels fighting to overthrow the Sandinista regime in Nicaragua. The drugs that moved into the United States sparked the crack cocaine epidemic that laid waste to minority communities in major American cities.

To publish his expose, Webb endured threats from both Central American drug kingpins and the U.S. government. Kill the Messenger screens tonight at the RPL Theatre at 7 p.m. Here’s the trailer: