Written by: Taylor Sheridan
Starring: Emily Blunt, Benicio del Toro, Josh Brolin
I can’t fault this film.
This is a story of Kate (Emily Blunt) an FBI agent, thrown into the world of a Mexican drug cartel and the CIA’s fight to control the violence. And like Kate, we, the audience don’t know where it’s all going to lead.
This was a very well thought-out film: story, characters, soundtrack, cinematography and editing all combined to create tension and to keep the audience guessing. Sicario is more about the tension then violence. If the violence didn’t add to the story, then it wasn’t included. Clever devises and the imagination of the audience was left to piece the action together.
The cinematography (Roger Deakins) was a stand out for me: skies of rain, grainy black and green, infra-red; the silhouette of figures in army fatigue against an apricot sunset. The change in the visual imagery was used to create different moods and to keep the eye interested. With the ominous (there really is no other word) soundtrack by Jóhann Jóhannsson adding to the darkness and intensity.
There are some great characters here. Particularly Alejandro, played by Benicio del Toro (fans of The Usual Suspects will recognise) – likable yet terrifying. And I have to say I enjoyed the added texture of Spanish throughout the film. Matt, played by Josh Brolin (think, No Country for Old Men, also cinematography by Roger Deakins and another favourite of mine) was also a very interesting, well-rounded character who could make you laugh, but then turn you cold with a smile. I will be on the lookout for any upcoming films featuring Josh Brolin.
But it really comes down to the directing in the end. Denis Villeneuve has been around for a while: Incendies, (2010), Maelström (2000), Prisoners (2013). He is also set to direct the sequel to Blade Runner – very exciting stuff!
If you haven’t watched Sicario yet, you’re in for a treat.