Sicario

Sicario (Hitman) is a 2015 American crime thriller film directed by Denis Villeneuve, written by Taylor Sheridan and starring Emily Blunt, Benicio del Toro, Josh Brolin, and Victor Garber.

After leading a successful FBI raid at a suspected Mexican cartel safehouse, where they discover dozens of decaying corpses and a booby trap that kills two policemen, agent  Kate Macer is recommended by her boss for a Department of Justice special joint task force, overseen by Matt Graver (Brolin) and the secretive Alejandro Gillick (del Toro), to apprehend the Sonora Cartel lieutenant Manuel Díaz (Bernardo Saracino). Assured that the task force will bring Díaz and those responsible for the safehouse incident to justice, Kate joins even though her partner Reggie Wayne, isn’t asked to join.

They travel to Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, with a large force including Mexican Federali agents, to extradite Díaz’s brother and henchman, Guillermo Diaz and to preempt a possible ambush, the team kills several suspected Mexican cartel gunmen — shocking the conscientious Kate. Alejandro tortures Guillermo and learns that there’s a tunnel Díaz uses to smuggle drugs into the U.S. Reggie & Kate have apprehensions of the task force’s illegal and seemingly inexplicable methods. Finally, Matt reveals that the objective is not to apprehend Díaz as originally suggested, but to disrupt his drug operations to such a degree that Díaz will be summoned back to Mexico by his boss, elusive Sonora Cartel drug lord Fausto Alarcón. By following Díaz, they will bring Alarcón to justice.

While commiserating at a bar, Reggie introduces Kate to Ted (Jon Bernthal), a friend and Phoenix police officer. Kate and Ted go to her apartment, but as they become passionate, Kate realizes Ted is with the cartel. In the ensuing struggle, Ted begins strangling Kate, when Alejandro suddenly appears and subdues him. Alejandro and Matt reveal that they used her as bait, knowing the cartel would target her after she was seen at the bank raid. Alejandro and Matt torture Ted into revealing the names of other officers working for Díaz. Díaz is being recalled to Mexico, as they hoped.  Kate questions the good news, pointing out that they have no jurisdiction in Mexico. Matt states that she and Reggie were simply being used, as working with U.S. law officers grants the C.I.A. legal permission to continue.

Angered, Reggie advises that he and Kate leave the task force, but she insists on joining a task force raid on the tunnel to learn more about the operation’s true nature. At the Mexican end of the tunnel, Kate sees Alejandro kidnapping one of Díaz’s drug mules, a corrupt Mexican police officer named Silvio (Maximiliano Hernández). Kate attempts to arrest Alejandro for his illegal act, but he shoots into her bulletproof vest before driving off with Silvio. Realizing that Alejandro is operating illegally with the task force’s support, and that there was never any intention of bringing Alarcón and Díaz to justice through legal channels, Kate confronts Matt. Matt explains that they are attempting to return to a time when a single cartel, Medellín, ran the drug trade.

This monopoly gave the U.S. more control. Alejandro, a hitman who worked for Medellín, was brought on to topple the Sonora Cartel by assassinating Alarcón, thus reducing cartel competition. Alejandro’s own motive is revenge: Alarcón had ordered the murder of Alejandro’s wife and daughter. In Mexico, Alejandro forces Silvio to drive him to Díaz, kills Silvio, and forces Diaz to continue to Alarcón. Reaching Alarcón’s estate, Alejandro kills Díaz, all the guards, and the entire Alarcón family. Alejandro appears in Kate’s apartment, and forces her at gunpoint to sign a waiver legitimizing the operation. As he leaves, she aims her pistol at him, but cannot bring herself to pull the trigger. In Nogales, Sonora, Silvio’s widow watches her son’s soccer game. The game is briefly interrupted by the sound of gunfire, before continuing.

At times I lost interest but at times I was pulled in deep and was enthralled by the events unfolding in the movie. I thought Blunt & Del Toro were fantastic as was Brolin. It’s a would recommend for people who like crime/cop movies and thrillers. 7.5 outta 10!

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