Film review: Gringo is a deliriously entertaining and hilarious comedy thriller

Gringo Movie Poster. Picture: STX ENTERTAINMENT

Gringo Movie Poster. Picture: STX ENTERTAINMENT - Credit: Archant

Whether appearing in front of or behind the camera, filmmaker and stuntman Nash Edgerton has long established himself as a formidable talent within the film industry.

Lending his abilities as a stunt performer to likes of The Matrix trilogy (1999-2003) and Superman Returns (2006) and impressing with directorial debut The Square (2008).

Edgerton’s latest venture and second feature as director is gripping, pitch-black comedy thriller Gringo.

The film focuses on businessman Harold Soyinka (David Oyelowo) who, during a routine trip to Mexico with perfidious employers Richard (Joel Edgerton) and Elaine (Charlize Theron), finds himself pursued by a Mexican cartel.

Over 110 minutes we, along with the unassuming Harold, are thrust into an exhilarating and deeply funny journey filled with double crosses, fake kidnappings, drug lords, DEA agents and reformed hit-men, all of which are handled by the director with a frenzied, anarchic sense of fun.

As enjoyable as the film is, Edgerton struggles to juggle Gringo’s multiple, complex plot strands effectively, making the film at times difficult to follow.

Despite this, the film is a consistently amusing and engaging affair, enlivened by a strong cast. Oyelowo, usually cast in more dramatic roles, is a revelation. The actor fills Harold, who could easily become an irritating, unlikeable character, with a charm and fragility that makes him easy to root for.

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Sharlto Copley also steals scenes as Richard’s morally ambiguous mercenary-turned -humanitarian brother Mitch.

Though a little overstuffed, Gringo is a deliriously entertaining and hilarious comedy thriller.