The movie sequel of thriller series Luther is not exactly mould-breaking stuff but the talented cast makes it count


Share post:

‘Luther: The Fallen Sun’ is a direct sequel to the BBC show’s five seasons, headlined by Idris Elba.

‘Luther: The Fallen Sun’ is a direct sequel to the BBC show’s five seasons, headlined by Idris Elba.

Deep into the second half of Luther: The Fallen Sun (directed by Jamie Payne and written by series creator Neil Cross), we see fan favourite character Detective Sergeant Martin Schenk (Dermot Crowley) delivering a typically insightful one-liner. He tells John Luther (Idris Elba), “The tragedy is that you’re a much better man than you’ve ever allowed yourself to become.”

This is a good way of understanding what drives Luther, a cop who cannot help doing the best things in the worst possible way. The cost of his rash and impulsive decision-making is usually borne by the people who care about him — family, friends and as long-term  Luther fans will know, junior colleagues.  The Fallen Sun is a new two-hour film recently released on Netflix, a direct sequel to the BBC show  Luther’s five seasons. The story’s focus is the collateral damage, the human cost of Luther’s extra-legal methods of catching killers.

The Big Bad this time around is a wealthy serial killer called David Robey (Andy Serkis), a blackmailer of rare will and resources who manipulates people using their best-kept secrets. At the beginning of the story, Robey uses a cop on his payroll to get Luther convicted and imprisoned for all his past criminal conduct (and the show is littered with these instances, it has to be said). With the detective behind bars, Robey threatens to pull off a macabre, live-streamed killing spree — unless, of course, Luther breaks out of prison and catches up with him first.

Technically sound

The prison break scene in ‘Luther: The Fallen Sun’.

The prison break scene in ‘Luther: The Fallen Sun’.

Renegade ex-cop hunting down serial killer in London against a ticking clock is not exactly mould-breaking stuff but Elba, Serkis and co. make it work with spirited performances. It also helps that the film is technically on solid ground, with chase sequences and combat scenes being expertly choreographed (Luther’s prison break sequence, for instance, would not be out of place in a James Bond or Mission Impossible film).

Serkis in particular is devastatingly good as the serial killer dripping with malevolent glee. The British actor’s worldwide fame as the face of motion capture technology (thanks to his work in fantasy franchises such as  Lord of the Rings and  Planet of the Apes) sometimes makes it easy to forget that he’s a brilliant, intensely theatrical performer who fills up a scene with his presence. His scenes with Luther are outstanding, none more so than the high-stakes climax where Serkis shows off his masterful voice modulation.

Elba, too, is reliable as ever as the moody genius Luther. His weariness and the fact that he has literally nothing left to lose are painfully clear in everything he does. Elba’s wounded eyes, his trademark Luther hunch and his easy-on-the-ears drawl do a lot of the heavy lifting for  The Fallen Sun.

Nothing new about Luther’s past

I was disappointed, however, that the film didn’t tell us anything new about Luther’s past — perhaps this is material saved for another sequel? Cynthia Erivo, whose star is on the rise after a string of high-profile roles recently (including the Disney live-action remake of  Pinocchio last year), also does a fine job as Detective Chief Inspector Odette Raine, Schenk’s successor who is forced to work with Luther against her wishes.

Ajay Devgn in ‘Rudra: The Edge of Darkness’, Disney+ Hotstar’s official remake of ‘Luther’.

Ajay Devgn in ‘Rudra: The Edge of Darkness’, Disney+ Hotstar’s official remake of ‘Luther’.

Closer home, Ajay Devgn had starred in  Rudra, Hotstar’s official remake of  Luther, with decidedly mixed results. Though Devgn did better than most of his recent performances,  Rudra was ultimately a failure because of its weak screenplay. The show couldn’t transpose the wry humour and London atmospherics of  Luther on to the Mumbai underworld, and this made the final product patchy and ill-conceived.

The Fallen Sun isn’t quite a misfire in that vein, and that’s largely down to its talented cast papering over the cracks in the script. Watch it for Elba and Serkis. And if the film nudges you towards the original show (also streaming on Netflix), nothing like it.

The writer and journalist is working on his first book of non-fiction.

Source link


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here


Related articles

10 High-Protein Vegetables & Getting Enough Protein From Plants

Jillian Kubala, MS, RD When you eat protein, your body breaks it into amino acids—commonly known...

GrayMatters Health Earns FDA Clearance for PTSD Neuromodulation Device – MedCity News

Katie Adams The Food and Drug Administration recently cleared the first non-invasive, self-neuromodulation digital therapy for...