From Marvel Studios, exclusively for Disney +, the new original live-action series Moon Knight arrives on March 30, with Oscar Isaac, Ethan Hawke, and May Calamawy.
The series follows Steven Grant, a quiet employee of a gift shop, who is struck by memory lapses and memories from another life. Steven discovers he has a dissociative identity disorder and shares his body with mercenary Marc Spector. As Steven / Marc's enemies approach, the two must investigate their complex identities as they delve into a deadly mystery among the mighty gods of Egypt.
THE VALUE OF NOVELTY
When the need is to amaze continuously, sooner or later the saturation level is reached. For Marvel, the risk has become concrete, especially due to the real difficulty of having to manage the global continuum, maintaining the stylistic and narrative needs of every single feature film or series. In this sense, the genesis of a new hero is the cure-all that Marvel needed.
Species of a complicated subject with almost dark powers, albeit "minor" in terms of fame within the cosmogony of the House of Ideas. Moon Knight carries with it many risks on the narrative level: the complication of maintaining an aesthetic between psychedelia, mysticism, and torment on the one hand, and the need to reconcile these needs with a traditional genesis on the other.
Created by Doug Moench and Don Perlin and first appearing in Marvel Comics in 1975, the character of Steven / Marc played by Oscar Isaac presents us with a very specific profile: a man tormented by a mental illness. While embracing the darker and more intense sides of the original character, this new series also aims to introduce audiences to a modern version of the character, opening new horizons and exploring a Marvel superhero that viewers have never seen on screen.
Moon Knight, which in fact represents a novelty for the public and is not a derivative work like the other Marvel Studios series for Disney +, boasts an alternate direction signed by Mohamed Diab and the team of Justin Benson & Aaron Moorhead, who face each other head-on.
The visionary nature of the character and the challenges he has to face, making the most of the drama of the moonlight, the shades of black and white, and the dimension of the dream that only digital pushed up to today's levels can guarantee.
The special ingredients of an announced success are once again self-irony, the one that helps to bring back to earth a story subjected to the continuous divine and exotic solicitations, and psychological deepening, a classic parable on the limits of rationality, forced to leave the place. to analysis and acceptance.
Also thanks to a cast that represents the added special effect. A well-dressed Oscar Isaac fits perfectly with the restlessness and daze of Steven and Marc. Parallel to the narrative construction of the Moon Knight mask, we are invited to witness the interpretative construction of the character that Isaac performs under our eyes, physically transforming himself into something other than himself, adding energy as he embraces his fragility and/or strength.
Next to him, is the incredible Ethan Hawke, in a role as disturbing as it is ideal for its characteristics of otherness and irreducibility to connotations of gender or age. To complete the assembly - just to stay on the Marvel theme - of this new series, there is also a perfect May Calamawy in the role of Layla El-Faculty.
DAY AND (K) NIGHT
What at first could be described as the biggest limitation of the series, namely the absence of a direct link to the products of the Marvel Cinematic Universe known so far, is Moon Knight's greatest value. In the first four episodes seen in the preview, the show with Oscar Isaac manages to shatter every possible narrative prediction that the viewer can create, working on film genres and their alternation.
The directors use Steven's dual personality to change register continuously, interspersing grotesque tones with other disturbing and almost horrifying ones, as different from each other as day and night. Dissociative identity disorder is basically a pathology with an undisputed cinematic potential, repeatedly taken up by De Palma (Dressed to kill), Hitchcock (Psycho) up to the closest Shyamalan Split, and lends itself well to the connection with the moon, its changing form, and its gods.
On the other hand, Khonsu, the Egyptian deity belonging to the religion of ancient Egypt that we see described in the series, is the god of the moon and time and the meaning of his name is just "the wanderer", with reference to the path of change that it makes across the sky.
Aided by a sagacious script, Moon Knight is a surprising action series that seems to change like the phases of the moon, characterized by a competitive spirit, hypnotic and breathtaking sequences, evocative visual effects, and beautiful sets. Noisy and brutal, it marks a radical change in the tones of the MCU, returning visionary and momentum to a Studios that must never rest on its successes, but which is constantly looking for novelty.