From Joseph McCarthy to Donald Trump, take no prisoners lawyer Roy Cohn had a history of shaping politics throughout his adult life.
That life is examined in director Matt Tyrnauer's eye-opening new documentary "Where's My Roy Cohn?" It's a mesmerizing portrait of this political fixer, a man consumed with power and wealth and was willing to do whatever it took to achieve both.
"Cohn" traces its title subject back to his roots and his rise to notoriety serving as chief counsel during the McCarthy hearings. From there we see his 30-year career in New York - where he represented everyone from Trump to Gotti to George Steinbrenner and how as his profile rose.
As his face became more prominent due to his professional life, Cohn hid his personal life - specifically his sexual orientation - right up to his death due to complication from AIDS in 1986.
We see all this unfold through file footage and interviews - bringing insight into Cohn's quest for power and his struggles to keep his personal life private.
Tyrnauer has compiled an interesting panel to reflect on Cohn and his influence in the political world - including recently indicted Roger Stone, a friend and associate (I will admit though it is jarring to see Stone comment on some of Cohn's legal battles considering Stone's recent troubles).
What really elevates "Where's My Roy Cohn?" is how effectively it illustrates its subject's influence on today's divisive political climate more than 30 years after his death. This is a film that is a study in power and how one man shaped political discourse in ways that no one saw before, but has been elevated to new levels today.
It's both scaring and fascinating, a documentary worthy of its rather frightening and confrontational subject matter.