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Dev Patel
Dev Patel, Sharlto Copley, Pitobash
Writing Credits:
Dev Patel, Paul Angunawela, John Collee

An anonymous young man unleashes a campaign of vengeance against the corrupt leaders who systematically victimize the poor and powerless.

Rated R.

Box Office:
$10 Million.
Opening Weekend:
$10,119,435 on 3029 Screens.
Domestic Gross:

Aspect Ratio: 2.39:1
English Dolby Atmos
French Dolby 7.1
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 122 min.
Price: $34.98
Release Date: 6/25/2024

• Audio Commentary with Writer/Director/Actor Dev Patel, Co-Producer Raghuvir Joshi and Producers Jomon Thomas and Sam Sahni
• Alternate Opening
• Alternate Ending
• Deleted/Extended Scenes
• “A Labor of Love” Featurette
• “Monkey Man of Action” Featurette
• “Fateful Encounters” Featurette
• “Roots Exposed” Featurette


-LG OLED65C6P 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart OLED TV
-Marantz SR7010 9.2 Channel Full 4K Ultra HD AV Surround Receiver
-Panasonic DMP-BDT220P Blu-Ray Player
-Chane A2.4 Speakers
-SVS SB12-NSD 12" 400-watt Sealed Box Subwoofer


Monkey Man [Blu-Ray] (2024)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (June 19, 2024)

Many years into his career as an actor, Dev Patel decided to step behind the camera. 2024’s Monkey Man becomes his debut as a feature film director.

Set in the fictional Indian city of Yatana, a man just known as “Kid” (Patel) barely scrapes by as a combatant in brutal underground fighting rings. However, his life changes when he finds a way to rise through social ranks and potentially get close to Baba Shakti (Makrand Deshpande), a spiritual leader who uses ruthless methods to get what he wants.

Under the pseudonym “Bobby”, Kid does all this to pursue revenge against Baba Shakti for misdeeds committed during Kid’s childhood. This takes Kid on a dangerous path as he attempts to right prior wrongs.

During this disc’s commentary, Patel indicates that he feels Americans will largely see Monkey as a branch of the John Wick tree. However, he notes that Asian cinema like The Raid: Redemption influenced it more heavily.

Patel’s opinion of how Americans will view Monkey holds accurate – well, at least for this American. As I watched, I definitely felt as though the film came with a Wick vibe.

Indeed, Monkey winks at this connection. When Kid shops for a weapon, the shop owner tries to sell him a gun featured in the Wick films.

Whatever the links, Monkey exists as a passion project for Patel. The production dates all the way back to 2018 and the shoot actually finished in spring 2021, but due to a variety of factors, it languished on the shelf for three years.

I feel happy for Patel that his baby finally emerged from its long gestation. I just wish I liked the end result more than I do.

Not that I find Monkey to become an unsatisfying movie, and I think it starts well. Patel stages our introduction to Kid in a compelling manner, especially given the gradual way he doles out information.

After a flashback to Kid’s childhood, we follow his “career” as a fighter and his attempts to get involved in his pursuit of revenge. We don’t know that Kid actually wants to right wrongs for a while, and it takes even longer to find out why he possesses this desire.

And I like that. Too many movies spoonfeed the audience and assume that viewers won’t sit through a story if they don’t understand every plot beat at every second.

Patel gives moviegoers more credit than that. As we watch Kid’s mission and past unspool, we find ourselves curious to see where things go.

Unfortunately, like the Wick movies, the path takes us toward action action action without a whole lot of story. Oh, Monkey never becomes nearly as plot-free as the various Wick sequels, but it does seem much more preoccupied with fights and stunts as it progresses.

Outside of one detour, that is. Along the way, Kid finds himself in an ostracized community of outsiders and they send him on the path to rehabilitation and self-actualization.

While this segment adds a bit of heart to the film, it comes so late in the story that it feels out of place. Monkey goes on this path probably half an hour later than it should, and that slows the flick’s push toward the inevitable action climax.

Otherwise, Monkey really does focus on fights to the exclusion of much else. Some of these fare well while others suffer from choppy editing and jerky camerawork.

What development we find tends to seem a bit heavy-handed, and as noted, the detour to the “outsider” community grinds the tale to a halt. What begins as an intriguing journey eventually loses its way too much of the time.

Again, this doesn’t mean I think Monkey becomes a bad film, and I liked it more on second viewing. I found it more convoluted and erratic theatrically, but via this disc, I felt it connected better.

Nonetheless, Monkey remains an inconsistent action movie. It comes with some strengths but doesn’t quite click in the end.

The Disc Grades: Picture B+/ Audio B+/ Bonus B

Monkey Man appears in an aspect ratio of 2.39:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. The movie came with a pleasing presentation.

Overall sharpness worked fine. A little softness impacted occasional shots, but the majority of the film appeared accurate and well-defined.

No issues with jagged edges or moiré effects materialized, and I saw no edge haloes. Source flaws also didn’t become an issue.

Monkey opted for a highly stylized palette, on that favored a mix of strong golds/oranges/ambers as well as reds, blues, greens and pinks. These lit up the screen in the desired manner.

Blacks worked fine, and shadows remained clear and smooth. Expect a solid image.

Downconverted to Dolby TrueHD 7.1, the movie’s Dolby Atmos soundtrack fared well. The audio fleshed out the material in a positive manner.

Unsurprisingly, the film’s many action scenes became the most impressive parts of the mix. These used the entire spectrum to place the viewer inside the violence and add solid involvement and punch.

Music displayed appealing breadth, and quieter scenes offered useful information as well. The soundfield worked well for the movie’s ambitions.

Audio quality satisfied as well, with speech that appeared natural and concise. Music showed good range and impact.

Effects became the most impressive aspect of the mix, as these elements appeared accurate and vivid. The audio worked well for the tale.

As we head to extras, we launch with an audio commentary from writer/director/actor Dev Patel, co-producer Raghuvir Joshi and producers Jomon Thomas and Sam Sahni. All four sit together for this running, screen-specific look at the project's roots and development, story/characters, themes, subtext and inspirations, cast and performances, sets and locations, audio and music, editing, various effects, stunts/action, various budgetary restrictions and connected domains.

While the other three chime in occasionally, Patel dominates this track, and he helps make it an engaging affair. Clearly a passion project, we get a solid discussion of the movie.

Plenty of cut footage appears. We find an Alternate Opening (3:58), an Alternate Ending (2:45) and six Deleted/Extended Scenes (22:34).

Like the movie’s actual intro, the “Opening” shows young Kid and relates the myth of Hanuman. However, it does so after the events that scarred him literally and figuratively. It creates a bit more intrigue but I prefer the more mellow existing start.

As for the “Ending”, it also focuses on the aftermath of Kid’s activities except it eliminates flashbacks to his youth. The existing finale offers a better link to the movie’s start, though if Patel had opted for “Alternate Opening”, “Alternate Ending” might make more sense.

In any case, much of the plot relates to Kid’s childhood. As such, Patel made the correct choice to stick with elements that highlight his personal connections.

The deleted/extended sequences don’t offer much that I think the movie needs. Actually, a scene in which Kid’s accomplice Alphonso suffers torture related to an investigation adds some intensity to the story’s stakes, but otherwise these segments feel largely superfluous.

Some featurettes follow, and A Labor of Love runs eight minutes, 44 seconds. It brings info from Patel, Thomas, producers Jordan Peele and Ian Cooper, and actors Sikander Kher, Ashwini Kalsekar, Makarand Deshpande, Pitobash, and Sobhita Dhulipala.

The program looks at the impact of COVID on the production, sets and locations, Patel’s work during the shoot, and the film’s distribution. “Love” mixes useful notes with fluff.

Monkey Man of Action goes for eight minutes, 35 seconds. Here we locate notes from Patel, Peele, Cooper, Thomas, and producers Erica Lee and Win Rosenfeld.

Unsurprisingly, this one covers stunts and fights. It follows the prior show’s path of insights and happy talk.

Next comes Fateful Encounters. A seven-minute, 21-second reel, it features Patel, Deshpande, Cooper, Kalsekar, Dhulipala, Kher, Thomas, Pitobash, and actor Vipin Sharma.

“Encounters” views cast, characters and performances. I expected little more than praise but we actually find a mix of worthwhile remarks here.

Roots Exposed goes for three minutes, two seconds. It includes remarks from Thomas, Patel, and Cooper.

We get statements about the Indian mythology featured in the film and connected domains. Expect a mix of good background.

Aspects of Monkey Man work well, as it offers an action flick with an unusual setting and cultural context for western audiences. However, the film only sporadically clicks and tends to lose steam as it goes. The Blu-ray comes with appealing picture and audio as well as a good collection of bonus materials. Monkey Man ends up as a mixed bag.

Viewer Film Ratings: 2 Stars Number of Votes: 2
0 3:
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