Several times we see filmmakers exploring minimalist casting and settings in four-wheeled vehicles. But this time, half of the production has been done in a giant LED studio. The Mandalorian series has previously gone the same way of production. Sympathy for the Devil is a minimalist thriller directed by Yuval Adler. This 90-minute film stars Nicolas Cage and Joel Kinnaman. Sympathy of the Devil is noted as the first feature film to use Vū studio LED screen technology in Las Vegas.
A man (Kinnaman) rushes to the hospital because his wife is about to give birth at a hospital in Las Vegas. Suddenly, a mysterious man (Cage) in the parking lot threatens to kill him if he doesn’t take him somewhere. The driver did not know what to do but complied with the mysterious passenger. The man did not hesitate to kill anyone in his way. A policeman was also a victim of his brutality. It was later discovered that the man did not randomly choose the driver.
Even though the story is dominated by two characters and limited settings (60% in the car), the story can build tension and mystery simultaneously. The motive of this mysterious passenger and his “crazy” behavior are the main reasons we are curious. As the story progresses, bit by bit, the mysteries begin to unfold, and this moment is presented brutally through a scene at the diner. Ultimately, a little story is offered besides the star’s stunning performance. Cage has always been expressive when playing the role of a “bad” figure rather than a hero, such as Face Off, Willy’s Wonderland, Pig, to Reinfield recently.
Sympathy for the Devil is a minimalist thriller dominated by Nicolas Cage’s impressive acting. This film feels like an experiment to test the capabilities of the indoor studio where the production is located. The results have been extraordinary. When watching, we won’t realize that almost all shots are done in an indoor studio with a giant screen as a backdrop. It is said that this technology can shorten production time and budget. Although in the future, we hope for a more complex story with a more varied setting. The Mandalorian series proved to be able to do it perfectly, even though it was done in a different studio.