Naperville Central High School's award-winning newspaper.

Central Times

Naperville Central High School's award-winning newspaper.

Central Times

Naperville Central High School's award-winning newspaper.

Central Times

Science teacher Paige Lundquist leads her third period Honors Biology class on May 10.
D203 Board of Education approves major changes to science course pathway
Nolan Shen, Arts & Entertainment Editor • May 23, 2024
One of the photos taken by senior Tomi Bounphisai of R41N during this years Centrals Got Talent show.
Senior snaps singing, dancing and prom: “I just enjoy watching their vision come alive”
Selah Lee, Staff Writer • May 22, 2024
Sophomores Lilly Jia (far left) and Audrey Cheng (left) instruct competitors at Clover Math’s elementary and middle school math competition, hosted at Central on April 26. Clover Math is an organization founded by four District 203 juniors.
Student-led math organization hosts competition
C.J. Getting, Operations Managing Editor • May 21, 2024
From left to right, Robert Zoellick, Dr. Catherine Adrian DeRidder, Matt DiCianni and Ben Hutchison pose after becoming Central’s newest Distinguished Alumni at a ceremony on May 3.
Central inducts four new distinguished alumni in 25th annual ceremony
C.J. Getting, Operations Managing Editor • May 20, 2024
View All
Support Us
$50
$500
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists of the Central Times by helping to fund their monthly print issues.

Recent Tweets
Instagram posts
Weather Central


  • 9 PM
    59 °
  • 10 PM
    58 °
  • 11 PM
    56 °
  • 12 AM
    55 °
  • 1 AM
    54 °
  • 2 AM
    53 °
  • 3 AM
    52 °
  • 4 AM
    51 °
  • 5 AM
    51 °
  • 6 AM
    52 °
  • 7 AM
    55 °
  • 8 AM
    57 °
  • 9 AM
    60 °
  • 10 AM
    62 °
  • 11 AM
    64 °
  • 12 PM
    66 °
  • 1 PM
    66 °
  • 2 PM
    66 °
  • 3 PM
    66 °
  • 4 PM
    65 °
  • 5 PM
    64 °
  • 6 PM
    62 °
  • 7 PM
    59 °
  • 8 PM
    57 °
  • 9 PM
    55 °
May 27
68°/ 54°
Patchy rain nearby
May 28
67°/ 51°
Moderate rain
May 29
68°/ 48°
Partly Cloudy

Review: Dev Patel delivers a knock-out debut with “Monkey Man”

Dev+Patel+stars+in+Monkey+Man%2C+his+directorial+debut.
Universal Pictures
Dev Patel stars in “Monkey Man,” his directorial debut.

In just two hours “Monkey Man” proves itself as both an incredibly exciting debut feature for director/star Dev Patel and not just another ripoff “John Wick.”

“Monkey Man” follows Patel as Kid, a young man who makes his living working in a fight club while donning a gorilla mask and seeks revenge against the elite who took his childhood away from him.

Almost immediately, Patel is able to imbue the film with its own distinct style full of frantic editing and fast cuts. Despite this quick, high-energy style of filmmaking, Patel is able to keep control over what’s happening on screen, never devolving into the headache-inducing fight scenes of the “Bourne” movies or the Russo Brothers’ MCU entries.

“Monkey Man” also shows itself formally very interesting, balancing its angry and brutal fights with stretches of spirituality and patience, taking inspiration from both Wick and Terrence Malick. For me, Patel is able to mostly balance these sides masterfully, with both feeling equally exciting and there were some moments of abstraction in the spiritual sections that really blew me away.

The biggest faults of the movie would be the villains, who were a bit thin and one-dimensional, and the flashbacks that give us Kid’s backstory. Early on, Patel plays with the character’s backstory in a very interesting way, using cross-cutting between various scenes and flashbacks to give viewers enough context without spoon-feeding it and simultaneously putting them into the character’s mindset. However, multiple sequences in the second act make way for full-fledged flashbacks which felt more generic and less effective than what came before.

None of these flaws affected the experience too much, and the second act builds up some nice weight going into the truly excellent finale. It’s raw and cathartic and brutal in a way I haven’t seen in an action film in a while and what, dare I say, elevates this beyond the later Wick films. What “Monkey Man” lacks in all the budget and elaborate stunts of those films it makes up for in emotional power.

“Monkey Man” is a great directorial debut for Patel, one that, while maybe a bit narratively thin, was a lot more formally exciting than I was expecting. Having shed some of the first-feature flaws, I cannot wait to see what Patel does next.

Leave a Comment
About the Contributor
Mack Gowan
Mack Gowan, Opinions Editor
Mack Gowan is the opinions editor for Central Times. Mack is a senior and this is his third year on staff. He loves putting information all over his stories. In his free time, he enjoys solving puzzles, cooking and listening to Dolly Parton, Marty Robbins as well as Bladee. Mack wants to be a filmmaker when he grows up.
Donate to Central Times
$50
$500
Contributed
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All Central Times Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *