Dark, gritty and suspenseful, “The Infiltrator” is based on the real life story of Robert Mazur, A U.S. Customs official who uncovers a money laundering scheme involving Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar, leader of the Medellin Cartel.

I kept waiting for horrible things to happen and it did. When the actors were speaking Spanish, all the subtitles did not appear on the screen. Thanks to four years of Spanish in High School and College, I was able to understand about 60% of what was said. Several people got up and walked out. Hopefully, the studio, Broad Green Pictures, will be able to straighten out the problem before the film opens in theaters on Friday.

Academy Award nominee, Bryan Cranston stars as Mazur. Cranston is superb. Cranston is basically known for his award winning role as Walter White in “Breaking Bad.” I felt Cranston should have won an Oscar last year for his role in “Trumbo” and should be nominated this year for his role in “The Infiltrator.” John Leguizamo is excellent as Emir Abreu. Diane Kruger as a newbie agent Kathy Ertz is stunning.

The two men get great support from the rest of the cast. Benjamin Bratt as Roberto Alcaino, Juliet Aubrey plays Mazur’s long-suffering wife, Evelyn, Elena Anaya is Gloria Alcaino, and Olympia Dukakis is wonderful as Aunt Vicky.

“The Infiltrator” was directed by Brad Furman who also directed “The Lincoln Lawyer.”
Furman’s use of dark and shadows help create a tension in the film that adds to the excitement.

The screenplay was written by Ellen Brad Furman based on the book by Robert Mazur, The Infiltrator: My Secret Life Inside the Dirty banks behind Pablo Escobar’s Medellin Cartel.

I always like it when at the end of a film based on a true story; the writer lets the audience know what really happened to the real people as they did at the end of “the Infiltrator.” It means I don’t have to go home and try to look them up online.

“The Infiltrator” is an interesting story is told almost as documentary but the acting makes this a film worth the time and money. There is some violence and most of the bad language is in Spanish, (yes, I did learn those words first in Spanish).

“The Infiltrator” opens at Friday at AMC Showplace Edwardsville 12.