An eye opening true story

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By 2017-10-15

By Nirupa Mohan
Ceylon Today Features

Tom Cruise stars in the new crime based film, American Made. Cruise plays the role of a pilot, Barry Seal, who is recruited to work by the CIA to be under the radar in Central America, flying in and out more than what he initially signed up for.

The film, based on a true story, is one that centres on covert CIA operations that go right up to the Reagan administration at the White House and even explains the early days of the Medellin Cartel.
American Made is directed by Doug Liman, famous for his work on Mr. & Mrs. Smith (2005) and Edge of Tomorrow (2014). Made with a budget of 50 million dollars, the film earned over 98 million at the worldwide box office and is backed by positive ratings, with 7.3/10 on IMDb, 4/5 on Common Sense Media and an even better rating of 87% on Rotten Tomatoes. The R-rated film is the first R-rated film Cruise has starred in, in nine years after his role in Tropic Thunder (2008).
The 115 minute film stars Sarah Wright as Barry Seal's wife, Lucy Seal, while Caleb Landry Jones plays the role of her brother, JB. Domhnall Gleeson plays the role of Monty Schafer, a CIA case officer, and Alejandro Edda plays Jorge Ochoa from the Medellin Cartel. The film includes a cast of actors who clearly manage to deliver the story with exceptional natural flair.
This is a film that isn't just about serving the country working for the CIA or DEA, but is about working with the cartels. Set in the late 70s, it stretches reality and goes beyond the limits of taking risks and living on the edge. The movie takes the audience through a creative view point and storytelling. That's backed by camera work through angles that make it more credible as a true story, incorporating VHS film style at certain points. It's portrayed in a light hearted manner, with a straightforward adventure feel that is not as serious and as compelling as some moments may have been.

The story has a lot happening and is fast paced, though it's politically conflicting. The war on drugs was a political view at the time, but in the background it seems that the Reagan administration had a clear involvement in the unravelling story, with arms deals, drug smuggling and hordes of money being made.

Even with many elements in this film, everything being interconnected, the movie still manages to deliver flawless storytelling of a man who was good at his job and later started making money on the side.

This is a film that is definitely worth watching, not just for Tom Cruise's excellent performance but for the depth in its plot. It makes you stop and think about how real life can be such a completely dangerous and exciting experience, which can go beyond what meets the eye.

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