Signed up the 30/03/2017
"The word Sicario comes from the zealots of Jerusalem, killers who hunted the Romans who invaded their homeland. In Mexico, Sicario means hitman."
Sicario is an neo-western crime thriller directed by visionary director Dennis Villeneuve (Blade Runner 2049, Arrival, Prisoners & Enemy) with the renowned Roger Deakins in charge of cinematography & Johan Johansson handling the films musical score. Sicario stars Emily Blunt, Benicio Del Toro, Josh Brolin & David Kaluuya.
The films plot centers around FBI Critical Incident Response agent Kate Macer who at the beginning of the film leads a tactical response team that are raiding houses suspected of being stash houses for the Mexican cartels that are operating within the area. After one raid goes horribly wrong, an incident in which a bomb went off at one of the houses resulting in the death of two officers, the Department of Justice feels that it is time to intensify its efforts in the war against the Cartels. They recommend Kate to join a covert state approved joint operation, headed by Mat Garver & his mysterious “advisor” Alejandro Gillick, with the sole objective of snuffing out the elusive leader of one of the most powerful Mexican cartels & in the process stop their operations. However as the mission progresses Kate soon finds out that Matt & Alejandro are not interested in apprehending their suspect through the correct protocol channels which makes her question the legality & morality of the entire operation.
Sicario is a beautifully crafted film which showcases an unblemished inside look into "the war on drugs" as we are given unrelenting gruesome examples of the sheer brutality & cruelty of what the Mexican cartels can do as well as what questionable lengths the authorities will go to stop these criminals. I loved how layered Sicario is as it builds up the story progressively with each scene making the audience hunger more for the crux of the story.
The film has a sort of poetic & harrowing ambience to it, a common trademark of all of Villeneuve’s films, & this atmosphere is created through the simplistic yet beautiful visuals provided by legendary cinematographer Roger Deakins. The musical score from Johansson also helps to amplify the atmosphere of fear & tension throughout the film especially in the most violent scenes of the film helping to heighten the impact of the situation. This creates a very uneasy feeling that you as the viewer are experiencing this violent realism firsthand. The individual performances from all the protagonists are also really top class especially from Emily Blunt, Josh Brolin & Benicio Del Toro. I particularly enjoyed Del Toro’s portrayal of the mysterious & deadly Alejandro who had me on edge with his soulless eyes & haunting presence.
In closing Sicario is a brilliant film depicting the endless cycle of violence between those who fight to uphold the law & the monstrous drug cartels who flout all forms order. A great addition to Villeneuve’s ever growing filmography that I urge you all to go check out so you can marvel in its brilliance.
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