Sat 30 Jan 2016
If you really need to put genre tags or labels on movies, ‘Sicario’ would belong to the ‘psychological thriller’, ‘violent drug action’, ‘Mexican border’ categories. While each of these naming would have its dose of justification, ‘Sicario’ succeeds to be more than these, actually it is one of the more interesting films in a pre-Oscar Awards season that does not make me too enthusiastic.
The film directed by the Quebecois Denis Villeneuve starts and develops for a while on the lines of a violent well-made and fast-paced thriller about American drug enforcement agencies fighting a bloody war against the smuggling Mafia on the two sides of the Mexican-American border. As the story advances we realize that there is much more than a war of gangs going on, and the questions that are asked are not only about the number of victims or arrests, or the amount of drugs that is confiscated or makes its way to the ‘customers’ but about the balance between law and efficiency, the price of human life and the tragedy of families who are collateral victims of the violence.
The quality of the film is built of the combination between the sure hand of the director, the music of Jóhann Jóhannsson and the splendid acting of Benicio Del Toro (in a role that fits him as a glove) and Emily Blunt who grows in the viewer eyes from a don-Quixotesque policewoman one can see only in movies to a key character for the whole story and a real person who carries on her shoulder the huge dilemmas of deciding between good and bad, between the rule of law and the need to win the war on crime by any means.
If you like any of the genres I listed at the start, you will not be disappointed by this film. If you are not the fan of any you still can enjoy this powerful drama and professionally made film, which exceeds the borders of the genres.