In 1985, Bronx, New York, where Millie and Wilson De Leon are expecting their first child. Wilson is a drug dealer working for Javier Cordero. One night, Millie shows Wilson that she has laundered his illegal drug earnings and made high quality investments, eliminating the need for him to continue his life of crime. Wilson goes to a meeting with Javier, who has him killed at the same time that Wilson Jr. is born.
Robert FitzPatrick: A pyramid scheme, a is fairly easy to define. Everybody has some understanding of that they are illegal, they are inherit frauds. They are inherently deceptive. The simplest explanation: Robbing Peter to pay Paul. That is an enterprise in which people would invest and, um, promised a return and they have to pay money. Um, and the return depends entirely on new investors coming into the same plan. So any money they gain is based on getting some of the money from the people who come in after them. Every person who comes in therefore needs other people coming in after them.
These songs have lyrics that don't have to make sense because the guy singing them is too busy with raunchy sleazy fucking for all that shit; lines like "you said so in a letter that said return to sender, my illegally illegal tender." Timeless, yes, but Hill's words are timely, too: "weapon of mass destruction" in a rawk song? What next? There's also an instrumental, "Louis Reprise", which starts like the Beatles' "The End" from Dad's classic rock station but swerves into fiddles and horns, like a more frat-ready Dave Matthews Band, whose concert last year almost got me stoned and laid, so whatever. Fuckin' rawk!
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In the grocery store one afternoon, however, Millie runs into a ghost from her past. One that she knows could be the end of her and her family. So, she rushes home with plans to move to a new town just as she has done two times before. Javier Cordero's men will be calling soon, with plans to extract revenge. But, this time, Wilson Jr. won't comply. He's happy in college, loves his girlfriend, and has no intention of being uprooted for mysterious reasons. Millie does everything she can to convince him to leave with her and Randy, but he won't comply. She finally breaks down and reveals to him that his father was a drug dealer for Javier Cordero (Gary Perez) and that Cordero had him murdered. She does not explain why he was marked for murder, turns out she doesn't really know the full story herself. All she can figure is that Cordero believe that he has been skimming profits and hiding the money for himself which he wasn't. Actually, their wealth was due to Millie's good sense to force his customers to pay back their loans to him from their own company checks thereby laundering the money and making it 'legal tender'. She's been investing his earnings on top of that to vastly increase their wealth. Wilson can hardly believe his eyes when she shows him the gun safe s