Hot Take: It starts off strong but fizzles. The second half loses its footing. There’s also an incoherent xenophobic vibe the film gives off that’s hard to shake. Plus, that shadow of the original is impossible to escape. Even with all that, it’s still not terrible thanks to compelling performances from Benicio del Toro and Josh Brolin.
Sicario: Day of the Soldado sets the tone early. The sequel to 2015’s Sicario opens with a brutal, graphic suicide bombing in a Kansas City grocery store. It sets the tone for a grim follow up to an already dark original. While the film retained writer Taylor Sheridan, the sequel moved from director Denis Villeneuve to Stefano Sollima who makes his English language feature film debut. The film mimics many of the aspects of the original and brings back Josh Brolin and Benicio del Toro who reprise their roles from the first film. Gone is Emily Blunt. The decision to not include her character in the follow up has met with great criticism and the film lacks a conscious that her character obviously brought to the original. The result is a film with uneven timing and a penchant to build to something that essentially turns out to be a set-up for a third installment to the Sicario story. That maneuver makes the sequel feel disingenuous and spoils what could have been a great follow up and results in what’s only a slightly above adequate movie.Read More →