Verdict: A realistic thriller with terrific performances.
Less than a month after Sicario’s release, a sequel was announced. While director Denis Villeneuve and actress Emily Blunt didn’t return for the sequel, the spirit of the film is intact with Josh Brolin and Benicio Del Toro reprising their roles and the script written by Taylor Sheridan, who had also written the first film. With Italian director Stefano Sollima making his Hollywood debut, Sicario: Day of the Soldado is as intense as ever with double the action.
What’s Sicario: Day of the Soldado About:
When terrorist activities in U.S. rise with a supermarket bombing that kills 15 people, the United States government gives Matt Graver (Josh Brolin) full reign to go against the Mexican drug cartel, which is suspected of smuggling terrorists into the country through the U.S.-Mexico border. Matt Graver enlists the help of lawyer-turned-hitman Alejandro Gillick (Benicio Del Toro) once again to fight the cartel activity by starting wars within the cartels. They kidnap Isabel Reyes (Isabela Moner), the teenage daughter of Carlos Reyes, the head of the top cartel, to make it look like the act of a rival cartel, however, the situation quickly spirals out of control.
Just as Matt Graver doesn’t have any rules this time, Sicario: Day of the Soldado also has nothing holding it back. With morals not being a concern anymore, the action is ramped up a notch from the first film. There are electrifying chases, heart-thumping shootings, and all of it is made all the more intense given the fact that there are young teenagers who are involved on both sides. You get to see Miguel (Elijah Rodriguez), a Texan teenager who becomes involved with the cartel to make some money. Then there’s Isabel who has to trust a stranger to keep her safe in the middle of all the violence. It’s not just the men, but it’s the younger generation who is affected by the drug cartel too.
There’s no doubt that Sicario: Day of the Soldado rests on the shoulders of the lead actors Josh Brolin and Benicio Del Toro. Their characters are good at taking down the bad guys, and nothing can get in their way. Taylor Sheridan’s screenplay has given these two more of a character arc and you can see them grow throughout the film. It’s not all mindless action either – there are some touching moments in the film too, and there are also political statements made which are chillingly powerful in today’s world. Sicario: Day of the Soldado ends on a strong note, which possibly foreshadows a third Sicario film on the way.
What Could Have Been Better:
There are moments where the film seems to be moving a bit slow but it’s more than made up for by the satisfyingly thrilling moments that come after.
Why You Should Watch:
Realistic action doesn’t get any better than Sicario: Day of the Soldado. If you’re a fan of Josh Brolin and/or Benicio Del Toro, be assured that you’ll see them being their best at being badasses. Even if you’re not familiar with the actors or the previous film, you will still have an immensely entertaining time watching it on the big screen.