SYMPATHY FOR THE DEVIL Review: Further Proof That Nicolas Cage Makes Everything Better

Editor, News; Toronto, Canada (@Mack_SAnarchy)
SYMPATHY FOR THE DEVIL Review: Further Proof That Nicolas Cage Makes Everything Better
The scene, Las Vegas. The Driver (Joel Kinnaman) is headed to the hospital to welcome their new child into the world. Upon arriving in the underground parking The Passenger (Nic Cage) hops in the back seat, points a gun at them, and tells them to drive away from the hospital.
The Driver is ordered to take The Passenger away from the Las Vegas strip, out of the city. Why though? What does The Passenger want? Why did they pick this car? Is this more than just a random hijacking?
Yuval Adler’s direction starts out level and static but changes as the story escalates further and further out of control. Their camera emerges from a static point and sways and swings with the increasing action and inevitable violence. Color, at one time existing only outside of the confines of the car’s interior, it’s electric warmth out of reach, burns into the sets and scenery with free energy the closer the story nears its conclusion. Adler manages tension and uncertainty early on, keeping us all in the dark, literally and figuratively. 
Cage is, well, Cage. One can wax on about how dependably great they are here, as a villain if that. Cage does what they do best, chews up scenery and dialogue. They immediately makes an impression when they enter the car, with a shock of red hair on top of their head that matches their ruby red, sequined jacket. The gun makes as good a statement as any: The Passenger means business. 
Sympathy for the Devil succeeds because of Cage. The quick flashes of bloody violence early on in the story also help, glimpses of The Passenger’s rage to further solidify their reputation as one not to be fucked around with. It is their performance, amplified against Kinnaman’s great performance as the person in peril role, that carries the film through to the certain conclusion. 
That’s the rub, the certain conclusion. Regrettably the story heads down an all too familiar path, one that has played out many times before. You already know the conclusion of the story before it even happens. Shame that. The title, Sympathy for the Devil, is a play on words it turns out. Who you side with throughout the film may change as the story progresses. Or, you may have already been on board from the start, sickos.
Sympathy for the Devil is worth a watch though because Nicolas Cage is always worth a watch. Kinnaman is equal to the task, playing against their co-star’s extremities. From a directorial perspective it is also worth watching Sympathy for the Devil to see Adler’s style progression as the stakes rise. 
[Edtor’s Note: Sympathy For The Devil had its world premiere at Fantasia this past weekend. It opens in cinemas this Friday, July 28th.
Screen Anarchy logo
Do you feel this content is inappropriate or infringes upon your rights? Click here to report it, or see our DMCA policy.
Burns BurnsJoel KinnamanNicolas CageYuval Adler

More about Sympathy for the Devil (2023)

Around the Internet