The prospect of making a sequel to 2015's "Sicario" initially seemed like a head-scratching choice, especially when it was revealed that original star Emily Blunt would not be back for the new flick. But apparently filmmakers knew exactly what they were doing, as the glowing early reactions to "Sicario: Day of the Soldado" have demonstrated.

Critics who attended advanced screenings of the flick have been taking to Twitter to praise "Soldado," with some admitting that they were initially skeptical of the sequel. But despite Blunt's absence, reviewers say that stars Josh Brolin and Benicio del Toro shine, as does the script from returning screenwriter Taylor Sheridan.

Many critics agree that "Soldado" -- which, like the first film, revolves around the ongoing drug war along the border between the U.S. and Mexico -- is "timely," with Moviefone's own critic declaring the flick "Tense, thrilling, and surprising." And the consensus seems to be that the franchise is ripe for yet another sequel.

Sounds like audiences are in for an entertaining trip to the theater. "Sicario: Day of the Soldado" opens on June 29.