Julien Neaves, Editor
There is a saying that a liar is a thief and a thief is murderer. So yeah, people who steal from others are not exactly beloved members of society. But part of the allure of fiction is escapism, and via that escapism it is okay to root for a thieving anti-hero.
And one thief worth rooting for is Assane Diop, the hero of Netflix’s new crime thriller series Lupin. The name comes from Arsène Lupin, the fictional gentleman thief and master of disguise created in 1905 by French writer Maurice LeBlanc. The character has been adapted in several films and television shows (mostly French) including a manga and anime series called Lupin III (Sommer did a review of the recent movie sonI’ll link that below). In the Netflix series Diop is inspired by the literary character and employs similar skills of subterfuge in his own capers in modern-day France. Here’s my spoiler free review of the first five episodes.
There is one big reason to watch Lupin — star Omar Sy. The French actor and comedian has had roles in major films like X-Men: Days of Future Past and Jurassic World, but this is easily his breakout performance. Sy delivers a tour de force of charm, charisma, likability and intensity that will have you riveted to the screen for every scene. And you will cheer for him through his various escapades and near escapes.
Sy also benefits from some whip smart dialogue (available both in the original French and a reasonably good English dub) and some terrific, intelligent writing. The plots never get Sherlock Holmes-level convoluted but there is enough complexity to make Diop seem like the smartest guy in the country. The series is also a masterful mix of comedy, adventure, touching family drama and crime thrills.
Lupin was just a joy to binge and I can’t wait for when they release the next five episodes of this season (if you find out when that will be, please hit a brother up). So if you haven’t seen it just go watch it and then come back and thank me later.
Julien’s Score: 9 out of 10
For Sommer’s review of anime film Lupin III: The First you can click here. For my review of French crime drama Le Gang Des Antillais aka Gang of the Caribbean you can click here. And for all new Redmangoreviews articles you can like and follow us on Facebook here.
Julien “Jules” Neaves is a TARDIS-flying, Force-using Trekkie whose bedroom stories were by Freddy Krueger, learned to be a superhero from Marvel, but dreams of being Batman. I love promoting Caribbean film (Cariwood), creating board games and I am an aspiring author. I say things like “12 flavours of awesome sauce”.
I can also be found posting on Instagram as redmanwriter and talking about TV and movie stuff on Facebook at Movieville.