It’s difficult not to have high expectations when you read the synopsis for The Informer. It promises to tell the tale of an ex-convict who works undercover and intentionally gets himself incarcerated in order to infiltrate the mob.
The Informer is based on the novel Three Seconds (or Tre Sekunder in Swedish), a dark thriller by crime-writing team Anders Roslund and Borge Hellström. Both have experience in the world of crime, with Hellström even being an ex-con.
With this in mind, an adaptation like this one should be high-octane, intense, and full of twists and turns. I’m happy to report that it met all of these expectations and more, and viewers should strap themselves in for a two-hour thrill ride.
Straight away, our protagonist (or perhaps that should be ‘antihero’) is an intensely likeable character, who’s trying to do right by his family and finally feel free. Pete Koslow (Joel Kinnaman) is an ex-con who’s willing to get himself convicted again in order to assist the FBI, following a complicated event which gets blood on his hands.
The less said about this film, the better, because the pacing is exceptionally good and more and more drama is revealed to us, putting many of the central characters in jeopardy. Pete has a family: wife, Sofia (Ana de Armas), and young daughter Anna (Karma Meyer), who find themselves just as much in the firing line as he is.
In terms of the way the mob is portrayed, it’s as terrifying as you’d hope from a film like this. Mob boss Klimek (Eugene Lipinski) is fantastic, he has an icy, eerily calm air about him and you immediately know that he shouldn’t be messed with.
On the other side of the law is the fantastic Rosamund Pike, who plays Agent Wilcox of the FBI. I thought she and Pete bounced off each other very well, with lots of tense and difficult moments between the two characters.
NYPD officer Grens (Common) soon gets involved too, creating more tension between local police and federal law enforcement. It’s difficult to know who to trust in the film, and that’s exactly what makes it so brilliant. It’s full of unexpected reveals, betrayal, and action.
The Informer is not a popcorn movie and requires your full attention in order to get the most out of it. You don’t want to miss any of this, as it’s a solid crime thriller that’s sure to keep audiences on the edge of their seats.
For fans of gore and violence, you’re sure to get it in this film too, as it doesn’t mess around when it comes to making the audience squirm. The Informer sugar coats nothing, with the terrors of organised crime laid out on the screen. In this world, it’s kill or be killed.
Whilst The Informer doesn’t revolutionise the crime genre, it doesn’t need to, as audiences should get exactly what they expected and hopefully more. It’s pure entertainment, and one to watch for those of you who love a good thrill.
Directed by: Andrea Di Stefano
Stars: Rosamund Pike, Ana de Armas, Joel Kinnaman, Common