Moon Knight – Review

Oscar Isaac as Moon Knight in Moon Knight – Courtesy of Disney+

Bringing Egyptian culture into the Marvel Universe, Moon Knight diversifies itself from the typical superheroes we see nowadays whilst introducing a new culture to this universe. Exploring split personalities throughout a comic book series, Moon Knight delivers one of the most creative and engaging MCU content to date. Oscar Isaac’s performance as the titular hero is the cherry on top of this fantastic series and leaves fans begging for more Moon Knight and Oscar Isaac.

There is without a shadow of doubt that Oscar Isaac delivered the best pure acting performance to the MCU to date. His ability to change expressions and personas from Marc to Steven is seamless and engages the audience in his performance. Oscar Isaac is able to capture the emotion of both characters as we see his struggle of each persona coming to grips that they have to coexist in order to survive. Ethan Hawk’s Arthur Harrow may not reach the heights of Josh Brolin’s Thanos or Michael B Jordan’s Killmonger, but he is easily the best and compelling Marvel villain in a MCU series to date. Ethan Hawke is able to balance the tone of both creepy and intimidating with ease as he sends chills down the spines of his viewers through his actions to achieve his characters goals.

The interesting aspect of Moon Knight is its ability to put doubt in the viewer’s mind of what is real and what isn’t. The first half of the series sets you up comfortably for a typical Marvel project, however it’s in the series’ latter half where the MCU formulaic playbook is thrown out the window and the creators are able to express their mind boggling creativity and deliver a very unique Marvel experience. It is very difficult to tell what is reality and what is a dream throughout this series which only becomes clear by the series end. The character of Marc Spector and Steven Grant is fully explored throughout the short six episode series by exploring the back stories of both personas in detail. Episode to episode we see the persona’s bicker with themselves about who should control the main body and each personality  slowly starts to rub off on each other. With Marc he is able to learn compassion by iterating with Steven and Steven learns not to be afraid and at times to channel your inner darkness is the only way to save the people closest to you.

Oscar Isaac as Steven Grant & Marc Spector in Moon Knight – Courtesy of Disney+

Visually Moon Knight is outstanding and is easily the best visually appealing series from Marvel yet. The consistency of the overall CGI is solid throughout the series, notably the character of Konshu looks like an Egyptian God and not some PS2 video game we have seen throughout The Mummy films. The utilisation of the lighting is excellent and effective throughout the scenes. Most notably throughout the earlier episodes the use of lighting was utilised well in capturing the horror aspects of Konshu such as a dark storage hallway lighting up only when he is there. However love most Marvel films and comic book films in generally is the classic “third act CGI slug fest’, unfortunately Moon Knight is a casualty to this as in the final episode we were treated to gigantic figures of Konshu and Ammit as we see them battling it out amongst The Great Pyramids of Giza. 

The production design throughout the series perfectly captures the Egyptians aesthetic as designer Stefaina Cella worked closely with Egyptologists to capture the essence of the Egyptian culture and history throughout the sets. The costumes for Moon Knight for both personals of Mark & Stephen is a true representation of themselves. For Mark we were treated to the classic comic book look for Moon Knight but in white and for Stephen the costume designers created a smart and sophisticated suit to represent his personality. Unfortunately Moon Knight was unable to be filmed in Egypt, however through the creative set designs and alternative filming locations such as Hungary, Slovenia, Jordan and Budapest the crew ensured to capture the essence of Egypt throughout the series. Hesham Nazih an Egyptian composer created the score for Moon Knight and he delivered a score which captured the Egyptian essence and introduced the world to different genres of Egyptian music.

Moon Knight may not be as ground breaking as WandaVision or Loki but what it does do is introduce the audience to a new and interesting character while exploring a whole new aspect and culture within the MCU. A second season or film is not confirmed at this stage but after the franchise best performance from Oscar Isaac it’s safe to say we need to explore this character of Moon Knight more and have him interact with other members of the MCU and Avengers as a whole.

8.0/10

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