Entertainment'The Sandman' review: Netflix finally fulfills the dream of adapting Neil Gaiman's...

‘The Sandman’ review: Netflix finally fulfills the dream of adapting Neil Gaiman’s acclaimed comic

Gaiman joined within the adaptation course of with Allan Heinberg (“Wonder Woman”) and veteran comic-book-to-film author David S. Goyer, who between this and Apple TV+’s confounding “Foundation” has carved out a distinct segment shepherding tasks deemed unadaptable to fruition in sequence type.
On this case, the much-anticipated sequence follows a proposed film that was to have starred Joseph Gordon-Levitt and an Audible podcast version launched in 2020, so kudos, in a method, only for getting this far.

Nonetheless, the dense fantasy components and lyrical storytelling do not simply translate from web page to display screen, and the meticulous element in replicating the look and tone would not create a lot emotional funding. That may satiate followers who can putty within the gaps, however within the context of a 10-episode sequence it might go away the uninitiated drifting off to dreamland themselves.

Faithfully following the comedian, the opening episode options Morpheus (Tom Sturridge), a.ok.a. the King of Goals, being trapped by a weird spell, rendering him the prisoner of a rich Englishman (“Recreation of Thrones'” Charles Dance) searching for the key to dishonest loss of life.

A long time move earlier than Morpheus escapes, discovering that chaos has ensued throughout his lengthy (by human requirements, anyway) absence, forcing him to get better misplaced gadgets as a way to restore his energy and management.

That slow-rolling quest unfolds in parallel trend with the actions of a shadowy, malevolent determine referred to as The Corinthian (Boyd Holbrook), who seeks to capitalize on Morpheus’ weak point, because the story oscillates between numerous fantasy realms and “the waking world” the place mere mortals reside.

Gwendoline Christie as Lucifer Morningstar, Tom Sturridge as Dream, Cassie Clare as Mazikeen in Netflix's 'The Sandman.'

Morpheus’ travels take him on quite a lot of detours (a number of chapters are basically episodic, at greatest peripherally advancing the bigger plot), resulting in encounters with different ageless supernatural beings, together with Lucifer (Gwendoline Christie) and Dream’s siblings referred to as the Limitless, reminiscent of Demise (Kirby Howell-Baptiste).

As for others within the stellar forged — lots of whom seem for less than an episode or two — they embody David Thewlis, Stephen Fry, Joely Richardson, and the voices of Mark Hamill and Patton Oswalt, the latter as a wisecracking raven.

The performances, nevertheless, really feel blunted by the narrative construction and dream-like storytelling, starting with Sturridge’s title position. In that sense, “The Sandman” is much less accessible than one thing like Gaiman’s “Good Omens,” the place Michael Sheen and David Tennant’s playful sparring helps anchor its mythic qualities.
Netflix isn’t any stranger to taking bold leaps with high-profile fantasy and sci-fi properties, experiencing the joys of victory and the agony of defeat, together with high-profile entries like “Cowboy Bebop” and “Jupiter’s Legacy,” neither of which earned a second season. “The Sandman” kicks off a stretch of big-bet adaptations across streaming, including additional company zest to its destiny.

On paper the sequence definitely has the substances to engineer an extended run, however this primary season — usually visually dazzling, whereas dragging within the later episodes — speaks extra to the idea’s promise than absolutely executing upon it.

For individuals who have eagerly waited for “The Sandman” to invade this realm — and little doubt harbor long-nurtured notions about the way it ought to achieve this — that thrill is perhaps sufficient. However maybe inevitably given the hypnotic nature of Gaiman’s mythology, a sequence dedicated to desires would not fairly become the stuff that desires are fabricated from.

“The Sandman” premieres Aug. 5 on Netflix.

Exclusive content

Latest article

More article