When Dr. Edwin Lorimer, a forensic scientist working at a private laboratory is found killed, Detective Superintendent Adam Dalgliesh is sent to investigate. Dalgliesh had been in the area ... See full summary »
When Dr. Edwin Lorimer, a forensic scientist working at a private laboratory is found killed, Detective Superintendent Adam Dalgliesh is sent to investigate. Dalgliesh had been in the area a few months previously investigating the murder of a young woman found in an abandoned car. There are several suspects: Lorimer's subordinate, Clifford Bradley, who despises him; the new head of the laboratory, Maxim Howarth, who is jealous of his sister's relationship with him; a colleague, Paul Middlemass, who had a fight with Lorimer. There is also a gruff and likely unethical policeman who was on the grounds of the laboratory at the time of the killing and a local pathologist who is raising his two young children after his wife leaves him for another man. When one of the suspects is also murdered, Dalgliesh learns a key piece of information. Written by
The first of the Dalgliesh detective series will surely put intelligent viewers off. First, at four and half hours long it is about 300 percent as long as it should have been. What seems like endless scenes of cars arriving, departing, and moving down roads, and of Dalgleish sitting and thinking to himself are just two of the ways the script is padded almost beyond belief. If this is being down in the first two parts of this three part series to establish an air of realism all this is thrown to the winds in part three when the major characters act in a downright silly way. Clichés abound. With a murderer on the loose, a young girl, who hitherto would faint at a frown, decides to take the shortcut home through the dark woods, announcing her reason for doing it to the audience as if the justify so silly a behavior in the mind of the viewer. The final coup de gras in this respect is when Superintendent Dalgliesh and the confessed murderer go for a walk alone in the countryside while the murderer explains the reasons for his criminal behavior. As someone who has just finished teaching the mystery as a part of a course in Modern Drama I count myself among the great fans of the dramatized mystery story. However, I fell asleep more than once trying to get through this one. 'Nuff said. Unless you are ready for your nap skip this one and go to 'The Black Tower' or one of the other later programs in the Dalgliesh series.
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