Sicario Films (Denis Villeneuve/Stefano Sollima, 2015/2018)

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DarkImbecile
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Sicario Films (Denis Villeneuve/Stefano Sollima, 2015/2018)

#1 Post by DarkImbecile » Mon Apr 07, 2014 9:51 am

Sicario, featuring Benicio del Toro, Emily Blunt, and director Denis Villeneuve.

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Re: Trailers for Upcoming Films

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#3 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Wed Oct 07, 2015 5:18 pm

It wasn't as challenging as Enemy as there were things I could see a mile away, but I don't hold it against the film as a whole. The performances and tension built throughout kept my focus tight as a drum.
Last edited by flyonthewall2983 on Sat Oct 17, 2015 1:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#4 Post by jindianajonz » Wed Oct 07, 2015 6:34 pm

I thought it played out like Zero Dark Thirty with more drugs and less patriotism. Excellent flick.

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#5 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Wed Oct 07, 2015 11:41 pm

Already talk of a sequel.
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I would be very interested in seeing where this would go. Del Toro's character, from the first moment he's on screen, held my attention the most. Then again, with how it ended I feel that maybe his arc was complete too.

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#6 Post by Luke M » Thu Oct 08, 2015 1:10 am

I loved this movie until the third act.
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One of the strengths of this movie was watching the violence through the eyes of a character who wasn't desensitized to it all. We don't know what's going on and neither does Blunt and so we're trying to figure this all out together. It worked extraordinarily well! But then the bar scene happens, pace-wise the movie comes to a dead stop Blunt's arc is terminated. She makes a mistake and has to be rescued. Sure, there's more of her in the tunnels. More of her getting upset with her superiors and a phony last stand in the final scene but it's all a sham. The movie stopped caring about her as soon as her car pulled up in the bar's parking lot. Instead the film decides to turn, what had been an intense thriller about drug cartels seen through the eyes of a young female protagonist in over her head, into a basic revenge story. We've all seen the film's climax. It was clever in Breaking Bad. It was more fun in Spring Breakers. If you've ever played a Grand Theft Auto game to the end, you've been there. This movie had so much going for it. I loved the way the plot unfolded but it just couldn't live up to what it was promising.

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#7 Post by ermylaw » Thu Oct 08, 2015 1:54 pm

Luke M wrote:I loved this movie until the third act.
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One of the strengths of this movie was watching the violence through the eyes of a character who wasn't desensitized to it all. We don't know what's going on and neither does Blunt and so we're trying to figure this all out together. It worked extraordinarily well! But then the bar scene happens, pace-wise the movie comes to a dead stop Blunt's arc is terminated. She makes a mistake and has to be rescued. Sure, there's more of her in the tunnels. More of her getting upset with her superiors and a phony last stand in the final scene but it's all a sham. The movie stopped caring about her as soon as her car pulled up in the bar's parking lot. Instead the film decides to turn, what had been an intense thriller about drug cartels seen through the eyes of a young female protagonist in over her head, into a basic revenge story. We've all seen the film's climax. It was clever in Breaking Bad. It was more fun in Spring Breakers. If you've ever played a Grand Theft Auto game to the end, you've been there. This movie had so much going for it. I loved the way the plot unfolded but it just couldn't live up to what it was promising.
I absolutely agree with your post -- the third act is definitely problematic, and you've explained well what I thought was off about it. Perhaps we should've both considered that
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The movie is called Sicario, which we are told means "hitman." So, the first two acts are really a ruse. The movie isn't about Blunt -- she isn't a hitman. The movie is about Del Toro, which presumably will be more clear in the sequel. Everything seems to be set up to reveal that he is the hitman of the title. For me, that's not a very interesting movie -- we've seen that movie many, many times. I, like you, was much more interested in Blunt's character and how she reacted to everything. (Although, Del Toro's character was quite interesting in his own right.)

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#8 Post by Luke M » Fri Oct 09, 2015 7:21 pm

ermylaw wrote:
Luke M wrote:I loved this movie until the third act.
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One of the strengths of this movie was watching the violence through the eyes of a character who wasn't desensitized to it all. We don't know what's going on and neither does Blunt and so we're trying to figure this all out together. It worked extraordinarily well! But then the bar scene happens, pace-wise the movie comes to a dead stop Blunt's arc is terminated. She makes a mistake and has to be rescued. Sure, there's more of her in the tunnels. More of her getting upset with her superiors and a phony last stand in the final scene but it's all a sham. The movie stopped caring about her as soon as her car pulled up in the bar's parking lot. Instead the film decides to turn, what had been an intense thriller about drug cartels seen through the eyes of a young female protagonist in over her head, into a basic revenge story. We've all seen the film's climax. It was clever in Breaking Bad. It was more fun in Spring Breakers. If you've ever played a Grand Theft Auto game to the end, you've been there. This movie had so much going for it. I loved the way the plot unfolded but it just couldn't live up to what it was promising.
I absolutely agree with your post -- the third act is definitely problematic, and you've explained well what I thought was off about it. Perhaps we should've both considered that
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The movie is called Sicario, which we are told means "hitman." So, the first two acts are really a ruse. The movie isn't about Blunt -- she isn't a hitman. The movie is about Del Toro, which presumably will be more clear in the sequel. Everything seems to be set up to reveal that he is the hitman of the title. For me, that's not a very interesting movie -- we've seen that movie many, many times. I, like you, was much more interested in Blunt's character and how she reacted to everything. (Although, Del Toro's character was quite interesting in his own right.)
I had considered this take after I had written my thoughts down. I think if that was the director's intentions then perhaps it's an even weaker film than originally thought. Even though Del Toro was superb, like you mentioned, it just doesn't make for a very interesting movie.

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#9 Post by TMDaines » Wed Oct 14, 2015 6:18 pm

Thought this was really very good. Possibly Villeneuve's best so far and his work is always of interest. It reminded me a bit of '71 (2013) in the way that it is a thriller that just so happens to be set in a conflict zone and so can ignore exploring or analysing the politics of the situation. Del Toro is excellent and the cinematography is truly stunning. I guess Deakins can expect to pick up another futile nomination

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#10 Post by Jeff » Wed Oct 14, 2015 9:09 pm

Deakins deserves the Oscar for this sequence alone.
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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#11 Post by The Narrator Returns » Wed Oct 14, 2015 9:10 pm

Yeah, that (and this whole movie) was some of Deakins' best work ever (a welcome return-to-form after the Deakins-By-Numbers Unbroken).

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#12 Post by Altair » Sat Oct 17, 2015 10:50 am

This was a very, very fine film. As others other noted, apart from Blunt's character, there was hardly an original element to it, but Villeneuve's direction is so precise, Deakins' work so excellent, that it doesn't really matter. The film is incredibly relentless and I like how the violence actually pacts a punch: we don't experience a vicarious thrill from it, but rather feel a mounting sense of dread and tension (most notably during the traffic jam sequence). Blunt operates as a fully moral figure, unusual for the genre: normally the protagonist would be Josh Brolin or Benicio Del Toro (who are both superb), but instead we have a very strong, ethical centre which serves to throw the amoral actions of both the cartels and government forces into even sharper relief. It's so good that I'd be tempted to hail it as The Hurt Locker of the War on Drugs.

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#13 Post by DimitriosMakropoulos » Sat Oct 17, 2015 6:12 pm

Probably one of the most gripping films I've seen in the cinema in years - not just thrilling, but consistently rewarding in terms of the background detail, dialogue and performances. I can't remember an as endearingly slimy ensemble as Josh Brolin, Jeffrey Donovan and Jon Bernthal in this.

But the Emily Blunt character and her sanctimonious friend are significant problems. Her reaction to the traffic jam shoot-out: 'that was fucking illegal'; was more nonsensical than it was moral. From that moment on she became so unsympathetic as to be wholly unbelievable (prior to that, simply for exposition's sake I could just about accept the implausible notion that an FBI agent dealing with kidnapping in Arizona would know next to nothing about the cartels).

And the 'Medellin' aspect would have been more at home in Homeland than a film for adults.

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#14 Post by Trees » Sat Jan 02, 2016 4:10 pm

Jeff wrote:Deakins deserves the Oscar for this sequence alone.
Image
Great shot, indeed. This film is one of my favorites of the year. It has the appropriate brutal tone. Del Toro ended up stealing the show. Glad to see that this director Villeneuve is working on the new Blade Runner film. My confidence in that picture just went up.

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#15 Post by HAL 9000 » Sun Jan 03, 2016 4:34 pm

For me, Del Toro has sort of played this character before in another movie. The movie I'm referring to is Savages. I think he is good at playing kind of nasty and immoral characters. The movie sort of reminded me of films like Black Hawk Down using cars and trucks heading into a troublesome situation rather than helicopters. The camera work and editing basically make me think that. I think another comparison you can make between the two films is that the Emily Blunt character is going to open her eyes to a situation she had previously thought differently just as Josh Harshnett's character came across in Black Hawk Down. What I mean by this is that Josh Harshnett's character realizes that it is hard to make a difference as a soldier helping the people of Somalia as does Emily Blunt's character does regarding the war on drugs. Both situations end up in negative conclusions and that these particular missions are basically un winnable and will probably stay that way.

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#16 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Tue Jan 05, 2016 3:52 pm

It reminded me a lot of No Country for Old Men, obviously in no small part because of Brolin and Deakins but it had a similar darkness to it, applied in a more modern setting.

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#17 Post by domino harvey » Tue Jan 05, 2016 10:05 pm

Pretty much on Luke M's side here. For the first hour or so, I thought this was shaping up to be one of the best films of the year, with Blunt's capable but in over her head FBI agent serving as audience surrogate to mysterious agency actions.
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But then the film falls back on the ol' crutch of a woman needing to be rescued, and later faring even worse by having her take unbelievable stands on principle that I find it hard to believe an experienced agent would be grappling with for the first time (and in such a, ahem, blunt fashion-- she may as well have taped a "Please assassinate me" sign to her back after the tunnel scene). Del Toro may indeed be the covert protagonist here, but as others have said, while it's still entertaining, I've seen his movie too many times already, and this could have potentially been a great film with a different third act all together.
Otherwise, looks great, good score, fine direction, &c.

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#18 Post by Zot! » Fri Jan 15, 2016 2:35 am

domino harvey wrote:Pretty much on Luke M's side here. For the first hour or so, I thought this was shaping up to be one of the best films of the year, with Blunt's capable but in over her head FBI agent serving as audience surrogate to mysterious agency actions.
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But then the film falls back on the ol' crutch of a woman needing to be rescued, and later faring even worse by having her take unbelievable stands on principle that I find it hard to believe an experienced agent would be grappling with for the first time (and in such a, ahem, blunt fashion-- she may as well have taped a "Please assassinate me" sign to her back after the tunnel scene). Del Toro may indeed be the covert protagonist here, but as others have said, while it's still entertaining, I've seen his movie too many times already, and this could have potentially been a great film with a different third act all together.
Otherwise, looks great, good score, fine direction, &c.
Agree with your last sentence, otherwise this is a piece of shit.
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the very premise that the CIA can't find one cop who is willing to be in on a legal take, but instead has to tote around Emily Blunt and her pal everywhere and listen to her endless incredulous bullshit sanctimony just to make their illegal activities somehow legitimate is wholly improbable, but is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of well worn cliches. I nearly turned it off after she watches a slideshow of atrocities and closes her laptop in disgust. Thanks guys, but I think we've established that she's an Arizona cop who apparently has never seen an illegal immigrant or dead body before despite shooting a dude dead right off the bat.

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#19 Post by thirtyframesasecond » Sun Mar 06, 2016 7:28 pm

This was excellent, just like Villeneuve's two previous American movies. All the lead performances are fantastic, especially Blunt (and good to see Daniel Kaluuya getting a good role too). Can't quite understand how it wasn't even remotely in the Oscars running given that it was such a mediocre year.



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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#22 Post by mfunk9786 » Thu Jun 02, 2016 9:48 am

Will this character also be shocked that the international drug industry has a seamier side?

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#23 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Thu Jun 02, 2016 10:28 am

What character?

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#24 Post by DarkImbecile » Thu Jun 02, 2016 10:34 am

mfunk9786 wrote:Will this character also be shocked that the international drug industry has a seamier side?
That's delightfully snarky, but an inaccurate characterization of what shocks Emily Blunt's character; what she's unprepared for is the
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federal government's policy to control rather than inhibit the drug industry, and the willingness to use the same kind of tactics employed by the cartels to do so.

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Re: Sicario (Denis Villeneuve, 2015)

#25 Post by mfunk9786 » Thu Jun 02, 2016 10:51 am

I'm well aware, it's the film's implication that Blunt's character wouldn't already be well aware of what's expected of her considering her line of work that was insulting to me. But I'm glad there'll be a sequel for those looking for it.

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