Since its launch in May 2020, HBO Max has served as a content hub for Warner Media’s various film and television properties. Over time, the streamer has built up an impressive range of original programming like Succession and The White Lotus. But the subscription service is also home to older fan favorites and movies like Sicario starring Josh Brolin. The film is currently at number seven on the site’s streaming chart.
Billed as an action thriller, Sicario stars Emily Blunt, Benicio del Toro, Josh Brolin, Jeffrey Donovan, and Raoul Trujillo. The story begins when an idealistic FBI agent named Kate Macer (Blunt) is selected for a secret operation. Recruited by mysterious government official Matt Graver (Brolin), Kate and her team are tasked with bringing down the leader of a brutal Mexican drug cartel. With the often intense Alejandro as their leader, the team’s methods are very unorthodox. And to Kate’s dismay, they even border on being illegal.
Directed by Denis Villeneuve from a script by Taylor Sheridan, Sicario was selected to compete for the Palme d’Or (or Golden Palm) at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival. Introduced in 1955, it is the highest prize awarded at the famous film festival. Unfortunately, Josh Brolin and company lost to French crime drama Dheepan which was helmed by Jacques Audiard. After its Cannes screening, Sicario began a limited release in the United States in September 2015. It became available on a larger scale about a month later.
Following its release, Sicario received mostly positive reviews from critics. On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film still holds an approval rating of 92% based on 280 reviews. The critical consensus calls the Josh Brolin film a tightly wound thriller with more to offer than its attention-getting set piece. The performances by Emily Blunt and Benicio del Toro were also praised, along with the screenplay, direction, musical score, and cinematography.
Moviegoers loved Sicario too. The film was a box office success, earning $84.9 million against a production budget of only $30 million. When awards season came around, Sicario received four Academy Award nominations in the Best Cinematography, Best Original Score, and Best Sound Editing categories. The Josh Brolin starrer also earned BAFTA nominations for Best Supporting Actor, Best Cinematography, and Best Film Music.
Due to its resounding success, a sequel called Sicario: Day of the Soldado was released in June 2018. Benicio del Toro, Josh Brolin, Jeffrey Donovan, and Raoul Trujillo reprised their roles for the follow-up, with Isabela Moner, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, and Catherine Keener joining the cast. The plot focused on the drug war at the U.S/Mexico border and an attempt by the United States government to incite increased conflict among the cartels. A third film called Sicario: Capos is also in development.
However, not everyone was a fan of Josh Brolin’s film. Before Sicario was released, the mayor of Ciudad Juárez (located in the Mexican state of Chihuahua) urged citizens to boycott the movie. At the time he believed the story presented a false, negative image of the city. According to the mayor (via The New York Times), the violence depicted in the film was accurate until around 2010. But the city had since made progress in restoring peace.
Fortunately, everyone who worked on Sicario wasn’t too fazed by the criticisms. Since landing his breakout role as Brandon Walsh in 1985’s The Goonies, Josh Brolin has appeared in various movies including 1997’s Mimic, 2000’s Hollow Man, as well as No Country for Old Men, and American Gangster in 2007. From 2008 to 2019, he starred in Milk, True Grit, Men in Black 3, Inherent Vice, and Hail, Caesar!
In 2018 he joined the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Thanos, an intergalactic warlord who, after collecting all six Infinity Stones, disseminates half the Earth’s population thereby restoring balance to the universe. He appeared as the character in Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame in 2019. The 54- year-old also appeared in 2018’s Deadpool 2 as Cable, a time-traveling cybernetic soldier.
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Since Earth’s Mightiest heroes destroyed Thanos, Josh Brolin is currently working on a comedy film called Brothers. The movie is directed by Max Barbakow from a script by Etan Cohen and Macon Blair. Produced by Legendary Entertainment, the movie also stars Peter Dinklage, Glenn Close, Brendan Fraser, Taylour Paige, and William Tokarsky. There is not release date at this time.