This sequel sees CIA Agent Matt Graver (Josh Brolin) return to enlist a mysterious operative, known to us as Alejandro (Benicio Del Toro), to investigate a Mexican drug cartel that has been smuggling terrorists into the United States of America, emphasised greatly by a suicide bombing in a Kansas City grocery store, killing fifteen innocent civilians in the process. Their actions, however, escalate the cartel situation on the whole, resulting in various double crossings and the occasional kidnapping. A worthy film but one that in some peoples eyes, didn’t quite reach the dizzy heights of its predecessor.
Director: Denis Villeneuve
Writers: Taylor Sheridan
Starring: Josh Brolin, Benicio Del Toro, Catherine Keener, Isabela Merced
As far as sequels go, Sicario 2, released in 2018, may be up there as one of the finest in recent cinema, especially when you factor in the vast amount of success that Sicario 1 (2015), managed to originally garner. The sequel saw many known faces return, but ultimately adopted a slightly different story than the first installment, which was at times a little too complex and convoluted for its own good – one of the only flaws from the entire one-hundred and twenty-two minute runtime, in my opinion.
As I understand it, the beautiful Albuquerque, New Mexico, was responsible for a large majority of the filming, with Mexico City, Mexico, also prominent. The cinematography was spectacular, as you’d expect from this set of filmmakers, with a staggeringly dark and menacing soundtrack complimenting the cinematography expertly, as well as helping to build tension and suspense in a number of key scenes.
Another thing that struck me was the fact that the film boasted quite a number of long, drawn out scenes that were at times, more brutal and unsettling in nature than the prior flick, including a daunting and equally as extreme opening act. Rather interestingly, there are murmurings of a third movie to compliment to two prior installments, which I’m sure many fans of the series are looking forward to.
In terms of the cast, Josh Brolin reprised his role of Matt Graver, the no nonsense CIA Agent that was responsible for the mission at hand, while Benicio Del Toro also returned as the cold blooded, ruthless assassin, known only as Alejandro. Elsewhere, Catherine Keener and Isabela Merced also appeared, starring as Cynthia and Isabel, respectively, with the latter commanding a key role in the flick.
All in all, Sicario 2 serves as an exciting and at times, action packed thriller that is bordering on the modern-day western genre. As previously mentioned, the filmmakers have been hinting at a third film to be released in the not-so-distant future, turning the series into a trilogy. One to look out for if so.
“You’re gonna help us start a war.”Matt Graver – Sicario 2