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Monkey Man Film Review

Monkey Man Film Review

It’s Dev Patel explodes in this tour de force feature directing debut with a breathe taking, bons shattering action thriller of one man’s epic quest for vengeance against the exploitative and corrupt leaders who murdered his mother and continue to systematically victimize the poor and powerless.

Inspired by the legend of Hanuman, an icon embodying strength and courage, Monkey Man stars Patel as Kid, an anonymous young man who, after the horrific land-dispute massacre of his childhood village, was left orphaned on the streets of the fictional city of Yatana. Kid now makes a meager living in an underground fight club where, night after night, wearing a gorilla mask, he allows himself to be beaten bloody by more popular fighters for cash.

But when, after years of patience and contained rage, Kid discovers a way to infiltrate the enclave of the city’s sinister elite, his childhood trauma boils over, and his scarred hands unleash an explosive campaign of righteous revenge against the men who took everything from him.

Monkey Man is directed by Dev Patel from his story and his screenplay with Paul Angunawela and John Collee (Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World). Featuring some of the most thrilling, shocking, and spectacular fight and chase scenes ever captured on film. Monkey Man does come across as John Wick/ Jason Bourne /Bruce Lee and The Raid/Old Boy in Mumbai. But we do have the film adding some of its own world-building, inspired by the legend of Hanuman, an Indian icon who signifies strength and courage. The film balances fast-paced action with poignant social commentary. 

Performance wise Dev Patel extends the film’s narrative from a personal vendetta to a collective fight for dignity and justice, thus giving the film queer sensibilities as a kid is someone who was alone and has found a home and a family with India’s most displaced peoples. The supporting cast are all impressive in their roles in this action thriller, the international cast includes Sharlto Copley (District 9), Sobhita Dhulipala (Made in Heaven), Pitobash (Million Dollar Arm), Vipin Sharma (Hotel Mumbai), Ashwini Kalsekar (Ek Tha Hero), Sikandar Kher (Aarya) and Makarand Deshpande (RRR).

Stand up Dev Patel for giving us a film that reflects India’s contemporary issues and gives a voice to the voiceless. The inspiration of which comes from the Ramayana and the deity Hanuman. He has cleverly meshed these stories into a caste system and the idea of the one per cent against the elites. The director cleverly fuses this mythology with his love for the action genre. MM is about faith: The action is pulled from action film tropes, like Bruce Lee in Game of Death or The Raid, it is always about working your way up to the big boss.

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