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Barry Seal - Only in America

Barry Seal - Only in America

USA 2017 - with Tom Cruise, Domhnall Gleeson, Sarah Wright, E. Roger Mitchell ...

The Frankfurt-Tipp rating:

Movie info

Original title:American Made
Genre:Drama, Comedy, Adventure
Direction:Doug Liman
Cinema release:07.09.2017
Production country:USA 2017
Running time:Approx. 115 min
Rated:Age 12+

Pilot Barry Seal (Tom Cruise) supplements his salary in the early 1980s through small smuggling operations. These do not go unnoticed by the CIA. He is recruited by agent Monty Schafer (Domhnall Gleeson) to use his talents as a pilot for covert operations in South America. Barry is persuaded, but soon discovers that the other side also has some lucrative offers up its sleeve. And so he soon flies for several clients and gets more and more entangled in a crazy web of drug smuggling, arms trafficking and covert operations, in which only one question seems to arise in the end: where to go with all the money that he flies home so?

With Barry Seal - Only in America, director Doug Liman and lead actor Tom Cruise present another highly entertaining collaboration after Edge of Tomorrow. This time, however, they don't tell a fantasy story, but one that - as unbelievable as it seems - is actually based on true events. Barry Seal, a simple pilot who became one of the richest men in America, really did exist. And even though some of the characters portrayed and events shown in the film have been somewhat exaggerated, there are always facts behind them.

The story is a bit confusing even when you know the political background, but that doesn't take away from the film's high entertainment value. Liman manages to perfectly capture the absurdity of true events with a balanced mix of cleverly constructed story, biting humor, and some action, turning it into entertaining entertainment cinema. With a very engaging visual style that results in a near-perfect '80s look, and an extremely good-humored lead actor, Liman's production also easily consoles over some slightly tamer moments.

Tom Cruise plays Barry Seal with a mixture of cockiness, naivety, charm, and tongue-in-cheek conniving that is just plain fun to watch. Here it becomes clear once again that Cruise is much better and stronger as an actor than his reputation. But the rest of the ensemble can also convince across the board, even if no one may succeed in stepping out of the oversized shadows of leading man Cruise. But that's not a bad thing in this case, as it fits very well with the inflated ego of Barry Seal.

Barry Seal - Only in America is perfect proof that fun, humor and pretension don't necessarily have to be mutually exclusive. It's a really good film that also works brilliantly as an entertaining addition to the Narcos series. For this delightfully absurd piece of portraiture of a coked-out sleazeball, there's definitely a: Absolutely worth seeing!

An article by Frankfurt-Tipp


  • Barry Seal - Only in America
  • Barry Seal - Only in America
  • Barry Seal - Only in America
  • Barry Seal - Only in America
  • Barry Seal - Only in America
Cinema trailer for the movie "Barry Seal - Only in America (USA 2017)"
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