with its terrific pedigree (Denzel Washington, Russell Crowe, director Ridley Scott, screenwriter Steven Zaillian), comes out Friday. Advance reviews
-- admittedly a small sampling -- have been mostly positive.
But if you want to get a sense of the real Frank Lucas -- Washington's character in the film -- check out Mark Jacobson's terrific 2000 article
from New York magazine. If Washington can get half of this guy's charisma on screen, it'll be the performance of the year.
And there's also a documentary on Lucas, scheduled to air on BET October 31 at 10 p.m. ET. "He is every bit as gifted as you would expect," writes The New Yorker's David Denby. "He's also boastful, cynical, and, as far as we can see, dead to the bottom of the place where his soul should be."
That dovetails neatly with a description from Jacobson's wife. Hearing his interview tapes, she "leaned back in her chair," Jacobson writes. " 'Oh,' she said, 'you're doing a story on Satan ...' "