Movie Review:: Sicario

 

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Director: Denis Villeneuve

Writer: Taylor Sheridan

Starring: Emily Blunt, Benicio del Toro, and Josh Brolin

Release Date: September 18, 2015

 

When I went to watch this movie, I didn’t know what to expect. Uncharacteristically for me, I didn’t do much research. I knew it was a crime thriller, I wanted to stay away from all things romantic for a while and I just chose to go watch it. Plus, there was Emily Blunt.

The movie really surprised me. The first scene of the movie was as gory as it could ever get. There was a police raid, shooting, horrific smell from decaying corpses, scores of dead bodies and even a blast. I was amazed that I survived the first scene (mini feat).

But the movie got more interesting from there on. The plot of Sicario focuses on an FBI agent named Kate Macer (Emily Blunt). Kate is enlisted by government officials to track down a drug lord, who has been responsible for multiple grisly murders. She is going aid a number of people who, we find out in the course of the movie, are often on the other side of the law. The plot though simple, is very engaging.

The characters are well developed. Emily Blunt gives an incredible female lead performance as Kate – she hates violence, but is serious about her job. Both Benicia del Toro and Josh Brolin are great in their roles. I especially was intrigued by del Toro’s character. There were many moments that I never saw coming. The haunting score and the unpredictable plot line consistently engaged me. The movie was very dark, sometimes unsettling and even scary. There’s a lot of suspense and the recurrent darkest sentiment of the movie is the sense of hopelessness. I don’t like violence and gore, and I still I enjoyed the movie a lot.

I would recommend the movie if you like dark stories, crime thrillers and good acting.

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My thoughts about Damián Szifrón’s “Wild Tales”

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I just finished watching Damián Szifrón’s “Wild Tales”. The movie was nominated for Oscar in 2015 in the Best Foreign Film category. But what really sold me to watch it was that it has 8.2/10 rating on imdb.com and 95% rating on rotten tomatoes. I’m a big movie buff, but I haven’t really watched that many foreign movies because I think reading the subtitles takes my focus away from what is happening on screen and thus leads to less feels. Anyways, this movie was different. In fact I was never bored enough to look away from the screen and play Farm Heroes Saga on my phone. If you haven’t watched this movie and plan to watch it in the future, then I will ask you not to read this blog as it will contain some spoilers.

Because I do some research before watching any movie seriously (unless I’m on Netflix and planning to fall asleep while watching it) I already knew that the movie was broken up into 6 short stories and that it was about broken people and revenge. I didn’t want to read anymore so I just started watching the movie.

The movie starts with a very hot Argentinian model going to the airport to board a flight. She asks if she can use her miles and the clerk at the airport says no. That was the first time something struck me as odd. Because when I fly I can always use my miles. It’s a different story altogether that i forget to add them. Anyways, maybe that scene was important to the movie or not, but it kind of got me hooked. This first short story is called “Pasternak” and it is about a person with the same name. The conversation in the movie was very interesting and it was fun to watch. At the end, they show an old couple and you are left to wonder if they are Pasternak’s parents or not. I’m pretty sure they are.

The girl in the second movie “Las Ratas” was very pretty and it was enjoyable to watch her. However, this movie was mostly surrounding the old cook and I think the theme was really how badly she wanted to go back to jail to lead a secured life. At least that is how I interpret it. I’ve watched Orange is the new Black and I think that the old lady will be quite the badass in jail.

The next story was “El Mas Fuerte”. When the story started then Diego Iturralde was driving through this beautiful road. As a newly confident driver myself I would love to drive on that highway between Salta and Cafayate, alone, blasting Enigma’s Return to Innocence. However, this is where it got really crazy and gory. This was perhaps the only story which was even funny at times, may be because at the core we are still ignoble. I fast forwarded the fight sequences a little bit because they are not really things I enjoy unless I’m in a movie theatre and I’m challenging myself.

After the third short story I started to question whether all these stories will be linked together at the end or not (a huge fan of Arthur Hailey’s Airport). I even started fabricating in my mind how all these stories could be related. Anyways, they were not.

The next story was “Bombita”. If I understood Spanish a little bit I would have set the expectation for this movie accordingly. This movie was fun to watch. I think i sometimes behave like this guy Simon Fischer. I will really overreact, shout and scream when something that seems unfair to me happens. I will react so much that everyone around me will remember my reaction instead of the bad thing that happened to me. Then from the next time onwards I will learn a lesson and just not react and do the same thing calmly without much fuss. Since I was relating the story to myself I was really confused when SImon, seating in a nice cafe, watched his car being towed. Anyways, I really just did not understand the ending of this story. Why would the wife who wanted a divorce because the husband was not spending enough time would come to meet him in jail happily with their kid. Also is it safe to bring a little girl inside a prison? I understand that all prisoners are not bad and often not guilty, but still… By the way, Simon Fischer is such a typically American name. Anyways, may be it is common in Argentina as well.

The fifth movie, ‘La Propuesta” was the one I enjoyed the least. I really have no comments about this story except two. Firstly, I really liked how the study and the video room in the protagonist’s house was decorated. I wish I have something like that someday. When my husband and children get too chaotic I will just lock myself up in that room and listen to Bocelli’s voice or Yanni’s composition to calm me down. I think this will remain a dream. The other comment is that I felt really sad when the gardener Jose was killed at the end.

The story that really frightened me was the last one “Hasta que la muerte nos separe”. Since I was a young child I have really worked on every aspect of my personality. It has really affected how I think about success, life, religion, relationships, career, politics etc. I have consciously chosen what I wanted to eat, what should be my impact and footprint on this world and many other things. The only thing I left untouched was my emotion and at this point in my life I feel like that is something that I should have worked on. This story kind of shows you that what a wreck you can be if you do not control your emotions at the correct moment. I really liked Érica Rivas‘s acting in the part of Romina. I admire actors who can let go of their need to look pretty on-screen and without any inhibitions become the character that they are portraying. Nonetheless, she looked so pretty in the end when she’s sitting on the floor, surrounded by her friends, crying and at the same time concerned about Ariel.

I cannot watch any movie without identifying personally with a scene, a character or at least imagining myself in a role in place of a character. I know many people watch movies objectively, just like a movie. But at the same time I think a movie like this one wouldn’t have got so much rating just for it’s entertainment value. I think it kind of shows what we as human beings are capable of doing if we are not constantly talking us out of it. All in all, it was an interesting movie to watch.