The law of the sequels can be good: the viewer has been so accustomed to seeing disappointing sequels that they often mute all forms of expectation, to the point of allowing themselves the possibility of a pleasant surprise. This is almost the case with the return of certain characters from Sicario, still under the pen of ultra-side screenwriter Taylor Sheridan, but without the other prodigy Denis Villeneuve who set off on much more ambitious adventures. This is our critic of Sicario Day of the Soldado movie.
Sicario Day of the Soldado movie critic
The mood is decidedly identical, with this procession of experts in bulletproof black-ops and all forms of sentimentality, ready to get their hands dirty to serve the American nation in the shadows. The beginning of Sicario Day of the Soldado movie, which comes with terrorist attacks to justify going far into the atrocities is a bit worried, taking up the issues that were the ambivalence of the 24H series in its time. We also find this tense atmosphere of extractions and border crossings, these Hummer columns and feverish expectations with multiple point of view views, especially from the inevitable helicopters. Although he does not reach the degree of mastery of his predecessor, Stefano Sollima does not demerit, however, and mobilizes a rather effective staging.
But it’s mostly on the storytelling side that Taylor Sheridan does well, at least in most of the film. While we invest in a damn marked field – war of the cartels, kidnapping, long-term revenge and dilemmas of vigilantes with dirty hands – the putting to the test of the characters passes through a series of bifurcations which manage to renew the rhythm and the interest we have in the characters.
It is no longer a mission whose conventional resolution could already be anticipated, but an imbroglio that aims to show how, whatever we do, nothing will ever change. Because the criminal world is a multi-headed hydra, and the politics facing it will favor staying in power over real daring in terms of decisions. This treatment makes it possible to rediscover a dark and deleterious atmosphere that recalls, for a time at least, Cormac McCarthy’s writing of Cartel or No Country for old men, without obviously reaching its intensity. Especially since the story attempts a parallel construction with a young boy doing his initiation among the smugglers before a graft to the main frame with forceps, and finally quite dispensable: from this point of view, the two well packed hours of the film are not not really justified.
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The last part of Sicario Day of the Soldado movie thus accumulates some awkwardness: a pooooin pooooin music that we had hoped gone out of fashion and which is really difficult (it may well be of the same nationality as the late Icelandic composer Jóhann Jóhannsson in the composition of the first part, Hildur Guðnadóttir really does not convince), the emergence of a slightly offbeat pathos and a posterior clearly between two chairs: Sheridan, definitely, does not have the blackness or the radicality of a McCarthy, and turns back a little pitifully on many tracks.
Too bad: on these desert and endless moors of the US / Mexico border, the narrative demands an aridity that is more in keeping with this sinister archetype of hell on earth.