Monday, March 29, 2010

Witness Jane Tennison's final case

Prime Suspect 7: The Final Act (2006)
Starring: Helen Mirren, Laura Greenwood, and Gary Lewis
Director: Philip Martin
Rating: Seven of Ten Stars

As her life is in total melt-down and alcholism is about to claim her once and for all, Detective Superintendent Jane Tennison (Mirren) struggles to close one last case before she retires from the Metropolitan Police force... the case of a 14 year-old girl who vanished on her way to basketball practice.

"The Final Act" is a nice, two-part close to one of the best television crime dramas to ever be created. It presents a decent mystery--one that I solved just ahead of Tennison, so the show plays as fair with the adience as ever--and it continues and concludes the downward spiral that's been Jane Tennison's life for the last 15 years. As she walks away from her collegues on the force in the final shot of the series, there is a sense that maybe she'll rise from rock-bottom, even if the character flaws that have grown deeper over the years are still very much present.

Although it is a bit slower moving than episodes in the early days of the series and not quite as good as the masterful heights reached in the early "Prime Suspect" series, it's still a fantastically acted and artfully written show. Helen Mirren and teenaged actress Laura Greenwood are particularly good in their parts.


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