TV Review – BROADCHURCH: SERIES 3 (2017)

Broadchurch: Series 3 (2017; UK; Colour; 8x45m) ∗∗∗½  pr. Dan Winch; d. Paul Andrew Williams (1-3, 7-8), Daniel Nettheim (4-5), Lewis Arnold (6); w. Chris Chibnall; ph. Carlos Catalan; m. Ólafur Arnalds.  Cast: David Tennant, Jodie Whittaker, Olivia Colman, Sarah Parish, Arthur Darvill, Charlotte Beaumont, Georgina Campbell, Andrew Buchan, Julie Hesmondhalgh, Chris Mason, Charlie Higson, Mark Bazeley, Lenny Henry, Julie Cox, Sebastian Armesto, Carolyn Pickles, Hannah Rae, Adam Wilson, Roy Hudd.  Trish Winterman (Hesmondhalgh) reports being raped after a party held by Jim and Cath Atwood (Bazeley and Parish) several days earlier. She was hit on the head with something and could not see who attacked her. DS Ellie Miller (Colman) and DI Alec Hardy (Tennant) are called; they determine that it was a premeditated attack rather than a crime of opportunity, leading to fears that there may be a serial rapist on the loose planning to strike again. Better than Series 2 but lagging behind Series 1 this is a disturbing story dragged over a couple of episodes too many. The investigation meanders from suspect to suspect to maintain the mystery elements before managing to eventually build the suspense toward the final reveal. In between we get long shots of characters staring into the distance over glorious coastal scenery and a couple of side plots resolving story arcs from the earlier series. It’s all well done in a calculated way. [15]

Film Review Round-up – BEAR ISLAND (1979) and WHAT WE DID ON OUR HOLIDAY (2014)

Bear-IslandBear Island (1979; Canada/UK; Colour; 118m) ∗∗∗  d. Don Sharp; w. David Butler, Don Sharp; ph. Alan Hume; m. Robert Farnon; ed. Tony Lower.  Cast: Donald Sutherland, Vanessa Redgrave, Richard Widmark, Christopher Lee, Barbara Parkins, Lloyd Bridges, Lawrence Dane, Patricia Collins, Michael J. Reynolds, Nicholas Cortland. A group of people converge on a barren Arctic island. They have their reasons for being there but when a series of mysterious accidents and murders take place, a whole lot of darker motives become apparent. Typical of its author this adaptation benefits from a strong cast who manfully struggle with poor dialogue. The pace remains lively and the action frequent making it something of a guilty pleasure. Based on the novel by Alistair MacLean. [PG]

download (1)What We Did on Our Holiday (2014; UK; Panalux; 95m) ∗∗∗∗  d. Andy Hamilton, Guy Jenkin; w. Andy Hamilton, Guy Jenkin; ph. Martin Hawkins; m. Alex Heffes; ed. Steve Tempia, Mark Williams.  Cast: Rosamund Pike, David Tennant, Billy Connolly, Celia Imrie, Emilia Jones, Ben Miller, Amelia Bullmore, Bobby Smalldridge, Alexia Barlier, Imogen Toner, Kirstin Murray. A couple and their three children travel to the Scottish Highlands for the kids’ grandfather’s birthday party. It’s soon clear that when it comes to keeping a secret under wraps from the rest of the family, their children are their biggest liability. Beautifully observed comedy with a game cast and a charming performance from Connolly. Descends into predictability in its final act, but a winner nonetheless. [12]