Nicolas Cage is in a lot of movies. The actor has been cranking out films in the last several years, many of which have been low-budget duds, but he has managed to craft some true gems among them. Another diamond was unearthed at this year’s Fantasia Festival in the form of Cage’s neon-soaked thriller Sympathy for the Devil.
Nicolas Cage is an award-winning actor but for years, he’s primarily been in subpar films, which means Sympathy for the Devil has been sadly overlooked.
The film follows a man who, while on his way to be with his wife as she gives birth, is forced at gunpoint to drive a deranged man around Las Vegas as he commits acts of violence. The Driver is played by The Suicide Squad actor Joel Kinnaman, and the Passenger is none other than Nicolas Cage.
It is almost a zany version of Collateral. Instead of a sleek Tom Cruise threatening a driver to transport him around town, it is Nicolas Cage giving one of the most delightfully over-the-top performances of his career. While reviews of Sympathy for the Devil have been mixed, everyone seems to agree that Cage shines brighter than the Vegas Strip.
The wild antics and manic energy of Nicolas Cage are balanced in the film by Kinnaman, who acts as a counterweight to keep Sympathy for the Devil from falling completely over the edge. As the film unfolds a deadly game of cat and mouse, it challenges audiences to go along for the ride, withholding key information for excruciating periods before delivering delicious payoffs.
Audiences first saw the triumphant Nicolas Cage performance at Fantasia International Film Festival in Montreal on July 22, 2023. Attendees of the largest genre film festival in North America were blown away by Sympathy for the Devil.
While reviews of Sympathy for the Devil have been mixed, everyone seems to agree that Nicolas Cage shines brighter than the Vegas Strip.
Several online reviews have heralded the film as one of the best of the year, but so far, very few have seen it. After playing at Fantasia, distributor RLJE Films engaged Sympathy for the Devil in a limited theatrical release that only grossed the film $70,000.
As of July 28, this Nicolas Cage cult classic in the making became available to buy and rent on major digital platforms, including Apple TV, Vudu, and Amazon Prime. A physical media release for Sympathy for the Devil is expected to hit store shelves in late September. The film does not yet have a home on a subscription model streaming service.
The film was shot in Las Vegas in the summer of 2022. While some of the movie was shot on location, many pieces were filmed in a virtual studio, making Sympathy for the Devil the state of Nevada’s first feature film to be captured on an LED soundstage.
The wild antics and manic energy of Nicolas Cage are balanced in the film by Kinnaman, who acts as a counterweight to keep Sympathy for the Devil from falling completely over the edge.
2023 has been a big year for Nicolas Cage. He kicked things off with the western action flick The Old Way, then got the fangs out as Dracula in the horror-comedy Renfield. Cage (or at least his digital likeness) made a surprise appearance in DC Studios’ The Flash before he took a bow as the Passenger in Sympathy for the Devil.
Nicolas Cage still has the action-comedy film The Retirement Plan and horror-comedy Dream Scenario set to release this year. While those films have excitement of their own brewing, Cage’s work in Sympathy for the Devil is so much fun it feels like a sin.