top of page
  • Writer's pictureK/XI

Monkey Man

Having Jordan Peele's name on a movie as a director or a producer is a big YES for me. I also loved that this was Dev Patel's directorial debut, which he also stars in. I remember first seeing him in the television show Skins when it was first aired in 2007, and he's come a long way.

From the initial trailer, we all got John Wick vibes and I think it's great that it's directly referenced in the movie, because most people will see this as an Indian 'John Wick'. However the comparison really only goes as far as that. I don't think it's fair to compare every vengeance movie to John Wick at all. What I found interesting about the film was the grittiness of the colour palette, which took me back to Slumdog Millionaire. The 'John Wick' films are so visually appealing and delightful to look at, with their high production designs and artistic tastes, whereas Monkey Man takes it underground and offers gratuitous violence with grungy greens and reds in the colour palette, often evoking the likes of Oldboy and the works of Nicolas Winding Refn, and yes it's great to look at, but leaves you feeling like you've just eaten the greasiest (but delicious) burger and need to wipe your hands.

I loved the blend of Hindi and English, and also that some smaller bits of dialogues were not subtitled but I could understand it. Dev gives a solid performance and the action scenes were incredibly brutal and often relentless. I adore mythology, folklore, and learning about different gods and goddesses, so the way the story of Hanuman is depicted in the film is quite tender as it connects the events to past events through a mother telling her son the story of the god. My absolutely favourite aspect of the film was highlighting the trans community. I spoke about this when writing down my thoughts on Joyland. Trans communities are ever present in South-Asia, but rarely get recognised as providing more than entertainment or a service. The way they are presented in Monkey Man, and the link to the gods is so poignant. It's something I discussed with my partner a couple of weeks back, so I'm really excited for her to watch the film. Duality is a beautiful aspect of Monkey Man, and without it, this film would have been just another violent movie about vengeance, however the duality explored through the gods, the trans community, and a magnificent scene involving drumming on traditional Indian instruments, really makes the film quite special. And of course all of this leads up to one particular fight sequence which has to go down as one of my all time favourites because of the masks, the costumes, the weapons used, and the faces behind the masks.

Go and support this movie!


Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page