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El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie. 

I will start by saying I watched this film the first time while only having watched the first season of Breaking Bad. The film hooked me – I didn’t understand a lot of what was going on, so I went back and binge-watched the entire Breaking Bad series, and then I rewatched El Camino. Breaking Bad is excellent, especially the last season, which features the best directing and acting of the series. The ending was also one of the most satisfying endings of any film or series. But one thing was left hanging – what happened to Jesse Pinkman? El Camino answers that question. The downside of the film is that seeing the series brings a lot of clarity to many of the flashbacks and sets the context for the decisions he made; those flashbacks reflect great screenwriting and directing for the film, for certain, but it is all a bit puzzling for the Breaking Bad deficient. Aaron Paul, who shines throughout the original series but especially so in the later seasons, is also excellent and nuanced here. I liked the characters who appear from the original, such as Mike, who took a fatherly interest in Jesse, and Jesse’s original girlfriend as they imagine different futures. Big thumbs up for a great series and also for a film that brings a more complete conclusion to the series. I really do recommend not seeing this until you see the original series. (2019; 4 Stars)

About Gary Burkholder

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