Master of None: Season 3 Review

mon sg 305 00026c 1621864294616 wLd3ey
tips

Master of None Presents: Moments in Love is available to stream on Netflix.

[poilib element=”accentDivider”]

One of Netflix’s best series from a few years back, Master of None, has returned with little-to-no fanfare, reeling from the aftermath of sexual misconduct accusations against creator/star Aziz Ansari and his subsequent self-exile from social media. For its third outing (four years after Season 2), titled “Master of None Presents: Moments in Love,” the series has dropped a wrenching, fascinatingly granular examination of a relationship’s implosion along with the ebbs and flows of being complicatedly human. It’s a stunning watch featuring astonishing, bare performances. Although, the stylistic elements of the series lean a little too far into naturalism and cinéma-vérité at times.

[poilib element=”poll” parameters=”id=8b604ae4-b447-4ed1-bf3e-8056bc7e21af”]

That being said, it’s Ansari’s admiration for European directors of the ’60s and ’70s that helps Moments in Love resonate as fully as it does. Also, never quite falling off the edge of the cliff into a static David Lynch dreamscape or a standoffish Stanley Kubrick wide shot, Ansari, who directed and co-wrote all five episodes of Moments in Love, utilizes a subdued fly-on-the-wall technique to actually help draw out the warmth in a lot of scenes.

Usually, this approach to filming is used to make things feel colder and less intimate, but here, tracking the tides and turns of star and co-writer Lena Waithe’s Denise and her wife, Naomi Ackie’s Alicia, the quietness actually draws us in. By design, Moments in Love is also meant to push us away, maybe even to the point where we summon up uncomfortable feelings ourselves.

[widget path=”global/article/imagegallery” parameters=”slug=master-of-none-season-3-photos&captions=true”]

Season 2’s “Thanksgiving,” which focused on Denise coming out as a lesbian, won Ansari and Waithe an Emmy for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series. For Moments in Love, Denise takes center stage (though Ansari’s Dev appears a few times) in a way that allows the series and story to continue without Ansari, but also not feel jarringly out of left field. Denise was a focal point in past seasons, so the Master of None universe shifting over to showcase her life and struggles feels like a genuine transition.

Moments in Love’s more exaggerated affinity for candid realism helps these chapters stand apart from the series’ first two runs while still feeling tethered. As a continuation, or branching out of Master of None, it works. Some moments flutter by like fleeting curiosities while others floor with heavy devastation.

[ignvideo url=”https://www.ign.com/videos/2021/05/01/new-to-netflix-for-may-2021″]

Season 3’s story, which charts the rise and fall of Denise and Alicia’s marriage in rural upstate New York, is diced up and dished out strangely. Longer episodes could have been split in two, or shorter episodes could have been combined, but instead, the delivery system is a bit messy. Though all of this, mind you, affords Moments in Love to deliver its best offering, “Chapter 4,” uninterrupted. With the lengthy fourth episode, Naomi Ackie’s Alicia and her personal struggles really profoundly grab hold. 

Portrayed as Denise’s flighty, demanding wife in the three previous episodes, “Chapter 4″ explores the multitudes and layers of a character determined to succeed on their own, with only themselves to turn toward for support and strength. Ackie is magnificent, and although this episode carries the most purposeful pauses and scenes that feel like a walk-by heartache museum exhibit, it’s also the most vulnerable and riveting. It might be the one you think about the most afterward.

[ignvideo url=”https://www.ign.com/videos/2017/05/15/master-of-none-season-2-is-even-better-than-the-first”]

tips
0 0 votes
Article Rating
Subscribe
Notify me
guest
0 Commenti
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments