Cranston Stays with Drugs, Switches Sides and Eras in “The Infiltrator” (Review)

InfiltratorThe movie “The Infiltrator” finds actor Bryan Cranston in a milieu he knows, namely the illegal drug trade. Where this film departs from the Breaking Bad series that made his career is that he is one of the good guys, and the setting is earlier: the 1970s Era when Columbia was the center of the War on Drugs. The difference in this undercover role is that rather than follow the trail of drug-dealers to the kingpin, the agent chooses to “follow the money.”

Infiltrator kept my attention, and because it was based on a true story, my interest. Yet some elements of the story cross paths with other stories that need to be told, namely the Iran Contra affair and the CIA involvement in money laundering. And at one point, an important character even references the connection between the Federal Reserve Bank and the Columbian government (Tell me more!).  Despite some after-the-film factoids and real-life photos that roll before the credits, those plot points hung in the air for me after the film.

Cranston delivers a strong performance amid a generally strong cast—which includes John Leguizamo and  Diane Kruger–but his character’s persona brought to mind Cranston’s characters in Godzilla and in Trumbo, the first movie review I did for this blog.  Sadly, I haven’t watched Breaking Bad.

All in all, it was another trip back to the crazy ‘seventies (when you wonder how they operated without cellphones) and worth the price of admission.

And Cranston “breaks-good” this time.


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