Monkey Man: superhero-ish film (Mark Kermode’s movie review).

Our man-of-many-movies, Mark Kermode, explores the cinematic jungle of 2024, where a new alpha predator has emerged, not swinging from the vines but leaping from the director’s chair with the agility of, well, a monkey man. Monkey Man, directed, co-written, and energetically inhabited by Dev Patel, is not just a film; it’s an adrenaline-pumped manifesto declaring Patel’s multifaceted prowess in the filmmaking savanna. For starters, let’s chat about Dev Patel, shall we? Here’s a chap who’s decided that merely acting is a bit passé and has thrown his hat, nay, his entire wardrobe into the ring of filmmaking. Monkey Man is his directorial debut, and blimey, it’s as if he’s channelling the spirit of every action hero, with a dollop of directorial flair on top.

The plot? Oh, it’s a doozy. Picture this: Kid (Patel) dons a monkey mask, biffs and bashes his way through underground fight clubs, all to avenge his mum’s untimely demise at the hands of the unsavoury sorts. Think of it as a delicious curry of action, emotion, and vengeance, served hot and spicy.

But let’s not forget the illustrious supporting cast who bring their A-game to this cinematic rumble in the jungle. Sharlto Copley, Pitobash, Sobhita Dhulipala and others make sure that our hero doesn’t swing solo through this action-packed adventure. Now, any old film can throw punches and high kicks, but Monkey Man infuses its fisticuffs with a hearty dose of sociopolitical commentary. It’s not just about who can land the most powerful uppercut; it’s about fighting the good fight against corruption and discrimination in the bustling heart of India. Think of it as getting a bit of enlightenment with your entertainment.

And if you’re wondering how it all pans out at the box office and with the critics – it’s been a roaring success, mate. With a hearty endorsement from reviewers who’ve praised Patel’s audacious leap into directing and acting simultaneously, it’s clear that he’s not just another pretty face in Hollywood. He’s here to throw punches, both literally and metaphorically.

So, what’s the takeaway from Monkey Man? It’s a testament to Dev Patel’s gumption, a high-octane thrill ride through Mumbai’s underbelly, and a call to arms against societal injustices. And if that doesn’t get your cinema-going senses tingling, I don’t know what will.


Colonel Frog is a long time science fiction and fantasy fan. He loves reading novels in the field, and he also enjoys watching movies (as well as reading lots of other genre books).

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