UNITED STATES: Moon Knight, starring Oscar Isaac, is all about Steven Grant, who has dissociative identity disorder. Steven, torn between dream and reality, finds himself in an unexpected situation where his simple character as a gift shop employee contains more of his super aggressive persona.
As Steven finds himself in precarious circumstances with cult leader Arthur Harrow, things take a wild turn, resulting in the unleashed chaos of his hyper-violent personality, branded as Moon Knight.
Oscar Isaac as Marc Spector/Steven Grant, Ethane Hawke as Arthur Harrow, May Calamawy as Layla El-Faouly, and F. Murray Abraham as the voice of Khonshu.
Excellent performances enhance the storyline’s sole purpose
The stellar aspect of the series is Oscar Isaac’s performance; the way he has played the character with multiple personalities is phenomenal. Marc and Steven have opposing personalities. Whereas Steven is a timid and weak demeanor, Marc is violent and fearless. Oscar Isaac portrays both personas on-screen admirably, and we rarely get the impression that he is reusing identical gestures.
Every scene in which Isaac appears is a breath of fresh air. All of the Egyptian god’s avatars interrogate Marc in the third episode. We see a continuous switching between him and Khonshu; at that time, we can see how expertly Isaac shifts his expressions, which is not everyone’s cup of tea.
May Calamawy has also done a fantastic task, as evidenced by the climatic events in conclusion. This is her first MCU appearance, and she has nailed it brilliantly with her acting prowess. Even though her character is off the established path, her chemistry with Isaac keeps the show on course.
Despite the show’s lackluster action sequences, Moon Knight is an entirely different show in terms of storytelling. It seems new, and the best part is that no prior expertise in the MCU movies or series is required. It’s a stand-alone show in the Marvel universe but doesn’t make any overt attempts to link with it.
The Moon Knight series’ strongest feature is its emotional undertones. The majority of the emotional scenes are featured through flashbacks. Even though Marc and Steven are entirely different, their relationship is built as brothers. The emotional aspects and the twist are heavily utilized in episodes four and five, propelling the series to an intriguing turning point.
Hesham Nazih’s BGM is also fitting, and the music that plays at the end of each episode is soothing. Each scene in the series makes excellent use of the background theme. Gregory Middleton and Andrew Droz Palermo’s cinematography is also fantastic. The mirror shots, which essentially illustrate several personalities, are the icing on the cake. The show also addresses mental health, which is extremely important in today’s materialistic world.
What could have been better in Moon Knight?
Moon Knight is an R-rated anti-hero and is known for his dark humor and brutality. Understandably, Marvel wished to generalize the character by classifying him as PG-13. The issue stems from the show’s slow action sequences, which turn Moon Knight into a sluggish fighter. The show lacks the rawness required to achieve the most exemplary action sequences. Marvel certainly has experience with action scenes; look at Daredevil. The action sequences for the Devil of Hell’s Kitchen have been choreographed to perfection. The same could be said for the Moon Knight, which might have elevated the show.
The finale’s climactic sequence raises the stakes dramatically, but it all comes to a close in the blink of an eye. The requisite tension before a fight also vanishes in the series. Lyla’s character feels off the rails at times, and her fate is entirely predictable at times. There are also some illogical aspects of the show, the most egregious of which is the third episode.
As previously stated, Ethan Hawke is a talented actor, but his acting abilities are underutilized in this film. His character lacks the ominousness of a villain. It’s as if he’s only there to fulfill a requirement that contradicts the concept of a protagonist. At first, Harrow’s character is portrayed as a strong character, but as the climax approaches, he is transformed into a weaker, forgettable MCU villain.
Although Marvel’s anti-hero deserves a watch for his unique storyline enhanced by Oscar Isaac’s performance, it slightly feels sluggish with its mediocre action sequences.