Friday, March 19, 2010

Box Office Review - The Red Riding Trilogy

Red Riding originally aired as a mini-series on channel 4 and more recently has been playing in select theatres across North America. The trilogy runs close to five hours, and it definitely plays better as a mini-series then a theatrical release. Three different directors were hired to helm the daunting task of creating this trilogy and they all have decent bodies of work. Julian Jarrold (Brideshead Revisited, Becoming Jane) directed 1974. James Marsh (Man On Wire, The King) directed 1980. Anand Tucker (Leap Year, Shopgirl) directed 1983. The trilogy is based on the Red Riding Quartet by author David Peace, and I think that actually reading the books would help the viewer understand the trilogy better. At times the films are frustrating and convoluted, as the plot focuses on police corruption spanning close to a decade. Each part has a different lead investigating missing children/murder cases. These cases all come back to the same cover-up and from there it gets very complicated. After watching 1974, and 1980 my feelings toward the films were cold. It was like watching three seasons of lost crammed into three hours. All that was happening was question being pilled upon more questions. I went into 1983 with low hopes, but it is definitely the best part of the trilogy. This has to do with the great performance by Mark Addy. He plays a disgraced lawyer investigating one of the murder cases. His is the most interesting character and luckily the story closes with him. I found the ending and wrap up of all the mystery very satisfying. I can’t say that it’s worth the five hours you have to put in to watch this epic, but if you are interested in criminal procedurals then Red Riding trilogy may hold your interest. Be prepared to be very frustrated.

A Good Banana

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