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DEA agent Kate is transferred to a secret task force that is part of the „War on Drugs“ on the Mexican border. Her role on this strange team is unclear and the role of the South American lawyer Alejandro is even more dubious.


In a reality that is out of control it is difficult not to become monstrous. Young, ambitious FBI hostage specialist Kate Macer (Emily Blunt) is promoted and gets put on a task force on a dangerous mission to take down a Mexican drug cartel with two commanding men at the helm: cocky Matt (Josh Brolin) and the unpredictable man on the ground Alejandro (Benicio Del Toro), a murky figure whose motives are unclear. The film is seen mostly through Kate’s eyes and her role in the middle of the crisis is unsatisfying; her statis reflecting the state’s paralysis and incompetence very well. She remains in the dark just like the viewers are.

French-Canadian director Denis Villeneuve showed his adeptness at capturing U.S. anxieties in the child kidnapping film PRISONERS, and in SICARIO he makes the waking nightmare known as the War on Drugs come to life with the help of Johan Johannson‘s chilling score and cinematographer Roger Deakin‘s shots of menacingly empty spaces. Sicario, which means hit man in Spanish, is relentlessly downbeat yet thrilling throughout. The film‘s grittiness and uncompromising, pragmatic look at the situation are rarely seen in US cinema; offering a very depressing peer into what is essentially a lost cause. SICARIO is grim and hard to bear but does not come off as exploitative. It is physically graphic, but what is far more disturbing is that it is situated in an ethical no man’s land. That is where its true horror lies.

Elinor Lewy


USA 2015, 121 min
Genre: Action, Drama, Crime Drama
Director: Denis Villeneuve
Author: Taylor Sheridan
DOP: Roger Deakins
Montage: Joe Walker
Music: Jóhann Jóhannsson
Distributor: Studiocanal
Cast: Benicio Del Toro, Emily Blunt, Josh Brolin, Jeffrey Donovan, Victor Garber, Daniel Kaluuya, Jon Bernthal, Raoul Trujillo, Maximiliano Hernández
FSK: 16
Release: 01.10.2015


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