“Luther: The Fallen Sun” is a story of secrets and unnecessary fear

Omoleye Omoruyi
Luther: The Fallen Sun
Luther: The Fallen Sun

If you have seen the BBC series “Luther”, a British psychological crime thriller television series starring Idris Elba as DCI John Luther and Ruth Wilson as Alice Morgan (and ended in 2019), then “Luther: The Fallen Sun” (2023), the story of a serial killer who terrorises London while disgraced detective DCI John Luther is thrown behind bars, would not be news to you.

Title: "Luther: The Fallen Sun"
Director: Jamie Payne
Running Time: 2 hours 10 minutes

The Plot – “Luther: The Fallen Sun”

“Luther: The Fallen Sun” stars Idris Elba as John Luther, a brilliant but troubled detective who has to break out of prison to solve a murder – a series of murders.

“Luther: The Fallen Sun” is the long-awaited execution of an idea for a standalone Luther movie that started with initial scripts back in 2013.

“The Fallen Sun” opens with an emotionally damaged DCI Luther called in on the case of a missing young man, Callum Aldrich, who disappeared after calling the police. The man behind the disappearance of Callum is concerned that Luther is involved and contacts someone to dig up enough dirt on his past exploits during his career to get him fired, prosecuted, and sent to prison.

Luther: The Fallen Sun
“Luther: The Fallen Sun”

After receiving a radio transmission from the serial killer while in prison walls, Luther must break out to go on the hunt for this new terror galling the streets of London.

The main plot and the serial killer don’t have any connections to the TV series, but the film relies on prior knowledge to fully understand the Luther character – his unique interrogation methods (like Jack Bauer in “24“), his alliance with criminals to get results, and the casualties he’s lost from operating in the grey are all quite vital when trying to understand why he goes to jail or why he is so eager to put his life on the line for people he doesn’t know.

“Luther: The Fallen Sun” does little -argue enough- to stand alone and gives some level of striking visuals and deadly stakes to keep the audience engaged.

Read also: 5 Nollywood movies that give you a sense of Nigeria’s political scene

Our one cent…

To start with honesty, we have not seen the series, but while fans of the series would show excitement to see Idris Elba reprise his role as DCI Luther, they may be let down by a predictable story and wasted potential. The beginning of the film is completely rushed as well, making it feel like certain scenes are missing from the film.

“Luther: The Fallen Sun” is a story told too many times in different ways – a monster is on the loose, a brilliant detective is called upon to solve the case, he does it, and happily ever after. In other words, the film suffers from a lack of originality and intrigue. It recycles many elements from many other films – “Batman”, “Sherlock Holmes”, and “James Bond”.

It looks more like a superhero movie than an actual crime thriller.

You would see a scene where DCI Luther looks at his ‘iconic’ trench coat (like it’s his superhero suit), and from there, you would see him standing over the city like a night watch. Maybe it is not Batman; maybe it is non-spiritual Frankenstein.

Besides all of this, though, you would experience a charismatic and compelling DCI Luther character, whose inner turmoil we can see and whose determination is laid bare. Close to him, slightly underwhelming, though, is David Robey (Andy Serkis), the unhinged serial killer that Luther must apprehend. Serkis channels his inner Joker and manages to turn in a rather creepy performance.

Luther: The Fallen Sun
DCI John Luther in “Luther: The Fallen Sun”

Robeys’ plan is, however, ridiculous and over the top, even if he has motive and the means to blackmail and terrorise at will.

Generally, “Luther: The Fallen Sun” has enough visual flair and persistent threats from David Robey for a satisfying story.

Luther: The Fallen Sun
David Robey in “Luther: The Fallen Sun”
We do not exactly like the story, so why review it?
...in the right circumstances,
The fear of shame
The fear of being called out
The fear of being caught is way more powerful than the fear of death 

- DCI John Luther

The fear of shame is a powerful and often overwhelming emotion that can significantly impact our behaviour and decisions. It is the fear of being judged or criticised negatively by others and feeling embarrassed or humiliated as a result.

This fear can be so strong that it can prevent us from taking risks, expressing our true selves, or even participating in activities we enjoy. The fear of shame can also lead to self-doubt and low self-esteem, as we become overly focused on the opinions of others and how they may perceive us. Ultimately, it can lead us to take drastic decisions.

“Luther: The Fallen Sun” brings that behavioural pattern to the fore through the villain, and there are lessons in there.

We all want to be the main character in our stories, and any secrets or past shameful events may want to stay there; in the past.

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