Director: Denis Villeneuve
Genre: Crime/ Drama/ Action/ Thriller
Runtime: 121 minutes
Starring: Emily Blunt, Josh Brolin, Benicio Del Toro, Victor Garber, Jon Bernthal, Daniel Kaluuya, Jeffrey Donovan, Raoul Trujillo, Julie Cedillo, Hank Rogerson, Bernardo P. Saracino, Maximiliano Hernández, Kevin Wiggins, Edgar Arreola, Kim Larrichio
Description: An idealistic FBI agent (Emily Blunt) is enlisted by an elected government task force to aid in the escalating war against drugs at the border area between the U.S. and Mexico.
Review: Ever since he was nominated for an Oscar for his film “Incendies”, the French-Canadian filmmaker Denis Villeneuve is a much sought-after director. His later movies, “Prisoners” and “Enemy”, were both praised. His work can be characterized as sober, grim and uncomfortable. For his new crime thriller “Sicario” that’s no different. It’s a dark film about the dirty drug wars near the border between the US and Mexico. An unnerving thriller with a complex plot.
We see the story through the eyes of Kate Macer (Emily Blunt), an ambitious FBI agent. While solving a kidnapping case, she finds the bodies of 42 people. They are the victims of relentless drug lords and she is asked to join a special task force to eliminate the Sonora drug cartel. The team is led by Matt Graver (Josh Brolin), a laconic macho. Kate goes with him to El Paso, but instead she ends up in the dangerous Ciudad Juarez. They manage to eliminate an important pawn in the drug cartel. But when the mysterious hitman (‘sicario’) Alejandro (Benicio Del Toto) joins them, everything is even more complex then Kate thought.
Emily Blunt is a surprising choice for the lead role in this grim crime drama, but Blunt is sublime. Like the viewer, she doesn’t know much about the mission she is on. Although she is not naïve at all, she feels uncomfortable in this violent and intimidating world. And the fact that she is missing out on the crucial info drives her made. Not only Blunt is fantastic, also Benicio Del Toro as Alejandro.
Besides the good acting, “Sicario” is nerve-racking. The brutal violence is everywhere, which might not be to every film fan’s liking. The grim atmosphere helps there as well as the excellent camera work and montage. All those aspects make “Sicario” into a nail biting movie experience. The tension between the good and bad guys, who is who? “Sicario” manages to lead you in the wrong direction and it’s only until the end you really know what’s going on.
Although it didn’t take my breath away like “Prisoners” and “Enemy”, “Sicario” is one of the best films of 2015.
Rating: 4,5/ 5