I watched Luther: The Fallen Sun, which picks up the story of the critically-acclaimed BBC crime drama Luther directly after its fifth season finale (which aired four years ago, in 2019), without having seen any of the show, and I was pleasantly surprised by how much it worked for me despite my unfamiliarity with the world and its characters.
The characters and tone feel very unique, but the story itself is quite the opposite: standard and unoriginal, but the production quality ensures that it stands out as a better example of its sub-genre. It’s a dark and twisted hunt for a psychopath (in other words, very BBC) that almost feels like an extended episode of a procedural — which, I suppose, it is.
My point still stands: even though The Fallen Sun is accessible to a wider audience (by design, I’m nearly certain), it is almost always beneficial to have a better understanding of a pre-established world before you immerse yourself in it. I can appreciate what I’m seeing on the surface — there are several stellar action sequences, the ending set piece is a solid coda to a well-executed story structure, and the film is generally shot very beautifully — but I am almost positive I would have loved it if I had a deeper emotional connection to what came before.
Luther: The Fallen Sun is playing now in select theaters, and will be streaming on Netflix March 10.