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About the Movie
From the director of PRISONERS comes this taut, critically acclaimed thriller filled with pulse-pounding suspense. After an idealistic FBI agent (Emily Blunt) is recruited by a government task-force official (Josh Brolin) to pursue a drug lord, she begins a perilous mission that forces her to question everything she believes—and pits her against a shadowy consultant (Oscar® winner Benicio Del Toro) with a dangerous agenda.
Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews
- Reviews Counted: 236
- Fresh: 221
- Rotten: 15
- Average Rating: 8.0/10
Top Critics' Reviews
Fresh: Within this dark epic of American failure lives an effective but decidedly minor vigilante flick.
Fresh: An unforgettable motion picture that should be on the must-see list for anyone who appreciates films that deal in grays rather than blacks and whites.
Fresh: Succeeds in evoking the anarchic violence of the drug wars raging on both sides of the U.S.-Mexican border.
Fresh: By the end, it packs a death stare so potent it will make you want to turn a blind eye to the shadowy brutality of its real-world horrors.
The biggest thing people, including the critics, don't seem to be mentioning here is the truly stunning visual beauty of this film. It's disappointingly absent from the reviews here so I had to mention it. Film makers nowadays seem to only use the camera to propel the storyline, but this movie has easily the most beautiful cinematography of any film I've seen in years. It's so refreshing to see a director devote real time to just plain ol' pretty shots, and they are abundant here. There's a particularly excellent shot of the desert during sunset, and it lasts for what seems like minutes. It's wonderful to look at, but also has the added benefit of adding weight to the film through the sharp contrast between the beauty of the scenery and the ugliness of the characters and action. Obviously the cast is great; Del Toro is brilliant, as usual, and absolutely intense, Josh Brolin seems to perfectly sum up the modern American, and Emily Blunt is better than she ever has been. This isn't a particularly groundbreaking thing, but it's done so well, with such masterful precision and clear intent. it just breaks away from the crowd. I really feel that it leaves a high watermark for its genre, and it more than deserves a spot in your movie collection.
Smart, Suspenseful Thriller
Sicario was the best movie about the war on drugs since Traffic. The great performances from Emily Blunt and Benicio del Toro, the slick cinematography from Roger Deakins, the unsettling score from Jóhann Jóhannsson, and Denis Villeneuve's direction combine to create a really complex and thought-provoking film. It's a powerful look at the morally-grey methods used to fight an unwinnable war and the human cost of it. If you get the chance, definitely watch Sicario, one of the best films of the year!
A Slow-Building Knockout
Denis Villeneuve burst onto the scene in 2013 with his chilling American directorial debut “Prisoners”, and later cemented himself as a director-to-watch with last year’s “Enemy”. Both films are excellent, and treat the audience as the smart moviegoers they are, letting them freely infer and fill in the blanks when it comes to things that aren’t fully spelled out. So it should come as no surprise that his latest effort “Sicario” succeeds in much the same way. This time he’s teaming up with the likes of Emily Blunt, Josh Brolin, and Benicio Del Toro, who prove to be a fascinating trio in this slow-building thriller.
The film follows Kate Macer (Blunt), an FBI agent eager to make a difference after several members of her team are killed while searching a home containing evidence linked to a prominent Mexican drug cartel. She volunteers to help search for the men responsible as part of a special task force led by supposed Defense Department contractor Matt Graver and his mysterious partner Alejandro Gillick (Josh Brolin and Benicio Del Toro). But things begin to get messy and many of Kate’s preconceptions are shattered quickly. We trail her on this spellbinding journey of moral ambiguity and blatant violence, and her perspective is what makes the majority of it so surprising.
The thing that struck me immediately about the picture was the astonishing cinematography, which was beautifully done by the legendary Roger Deakins (most known for his work on films like “Fargo” and “No Country for Old Men”). When paired with the superb acting from each and every cast member, you get a knockout of a movie. Emily Blunt is the true stand out here, and seeing her lead the film after so many great supporting roles is extremely satisfying. This is undoubtedly one of my favorite films of the year so far, and continues to grow on me the more I think about it.