Out of nowhere, The Informer has landed as a hidden gem for the summer film season. A neatly woven thriller, full of interesting characters, developments and a cast full of ace performances. The film has been acquired by Warner Bros in the United Kingdom, with a release near the start of 2020 over the pond.
Joel Kinnaman delivers a fierce sledgehammer performance as a ex-con and former special operations soldier. Kinnaman is a mighty anchor that advances the film beyond cliche and to something with further depth, specifically seen through his physical gestures, movements and his incredible eyes. Those eyes emote mixed feelings of fear, loss and anger, he doesn’t utter too much, but he doesn’t have to.
Recruited by the FBI, ex-con and soldier Pete Koslow (Joel Kinnaman) uses his covert skills to infiltrate a mob gang. When the death of an undercover cop arises, Pete finds himself stuck in the crossfire between the mob and the FBI. Eventually, against his own will, he is forced into prison and is told he can get out soon. Things go sideways, Koslow is forced to come up with a escape plan as he is pursued by violent warnings and assailants. He must escape from the clutches of the law and the mob to save himself and those closest to him.
Kinnaman lands one of his finest and most intriguing roles, he is lost within Koslow. He is backed by a rather-stellar cast, including Rosamund Pike who as-per-usual delivers what she is told. Pike’s character is very ambiguous, you can’t help but route for her, yet at points alignments change and you once more are aligned. That’s a testament to Pike’s acting chops and the little nuances she delivers. Common plays a determined cop who runs into Koslow’s case, he is menacing, brooding and actually quite hysterical.
Although the film is by far on the good side, there are some inherent flaws in the scripting nearer to the start. Specifically with Ana de Armas’ character, the wife, and some of the mobsters. Armas doesn’t deliver much of a compelling performance, but I chalk that down to being essentially a plot device to fuel Koslow’s passion to break free.
The thriller side to the film is fantastic. The action is well-directed, crafted and woven to create seamless scenes of thrilling violence. Kinnaman does a great job, pulling off one of my favourite moments in the cinema this year, I’m talking about one specific hostage situation.
In conclusion, The Informer is a neatly woven film full of thrilling violence, intriguing twists and tension-filled moments. Joel Kinnaman delivers a raw, sledgehammer-like performance as he becomes fully absorbed.
4/5 Stars ★★★★☆