El Camino. A Breaking Bad Movie. Review.

If you ask me who the best showrunner currently we working in TV is is my easy first answer would be Vince Gilligan There are few other showrunners that I think have supreme talent but we need to see how they follow up the critical acclaim once the series they are known for comes to an end.Sam Esmail and the Duffer Brothers come to mind. Gilligan and his team have spent the last decade on building the Breaking Bad universe in a way that feels organic, rich with great characters and superb storytelling. When it was announced after Season 4 of Better Call Saul that the next project in this universe was going to be a follow up movie focusing on Jessie Pinkman after the ambiguous Breaking Bad finale there was a little bit of trepidation and sense that they might be milking the franchise/universe but once they announced Gilligan was writing and directing most of that initial fear was gone(at least on my end.) The marketing gave very little away beyond the fact it was a continuation of Jessie’s story so I sat down to watch the film on the Friday night it dropped on Netflix with very little idea of what to expect beyond the typical high quality you get from Gilligan and this universe. Is this movie a good addition
The obvious answer is definitely but I will say the film wasn’t quite what I expected. Don’t get me wrong it’s got all the things you’ve typically expect from a project within this universe. Superb direction (especially since this is technically Gilligan’s first feature as writer-director), some fantastic sequences of tension,compelling story and a powerhouse central performance from Aaron Paul whose career really hasn’t taken off in the way it deserves to after the end of the main series. That said I also found the film mildly frustrating in some respects. The style will be more than enough to please many fans (including me) but reviewing the film objectively not much happens and it is definitely a case of style over substance at times. In a similar vein well some of the character returns feel natural some of them feel like Gilligan and his team pulling from a very deep character well purely because they can.
The fact that so little was known about the film in advance of its release may have been to it’s detriment for those who were expecting something on a much larger scale rather than an extended epilogue for Jesse. I think the film will play better to future viewers who know this in advance.
Even if it doesn’t hit the insane highs that we know as viewers that Gilligan and his team are capable of,this is still a very strong addition to one of the best franchises around at the moment. With this movie finished and released season 5 of Saul is next on the docket and I’m i’m looking forward to seeing what it brings .
8.5/10

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