An ex-newspaper woman who is now a suburban housewife can't resist getting involved in an investigation of the murder of a philandering dentist who had been having affairs with several of her neighbors.
Nick and Frank Starkey were both policemen. A scandal forced Nick to leave the force, now a serial killer has driven the police to take him back. A web that includes Frank's wife, bribery, ... See full summary »
Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio,
Wiley and Sandra have been happily married for years and are now in the process of breaking up. Sam, his childhood friend, is just beginning to fall in love with a new teacher at the high ... See full summary »
Desmond Jordan is an archaeologist who finds an old parchment in which is mentioned the history of the Loudspeaker Mountain, the guardian of an ancient and sought-after treasure hidden ... See full summary »
Max Baron (James Spader) is a 27-year-old high flying advertising executive still recovering from the death of his wife. One night he is in a bar when he meets Nora Baker (Susan Sarandon) a... See full summary »
A quiet school truant officer, Joe, uncovers a young boy's attempt to fake a residential address, and subsequently gets involved romantically with the boy's mother. The truant officer ... See full summary »
The extraordinarily fertile mind of Frederic Raphael
Writer Frederic Raphael is wittier than most mortals, and more literate by half. This wonderfully varied slew of seven hour-long screenplays written by him, most of them directed by the illustrious James Cellan Jones, are therefore intriguing and original and satisfying. All of them are about relationships of various kinds, and the way people intermingle and separate, about how they repel and attract, and about honor and integrity and all that is inbetween.
The first episode, "Oxbridge Blues", stars Ian Charleson and Malcolm Stoddard as a sort of Cain and Abel set of brothers -- one brainy, one earthy -- whose lives seem to do a turn-around mid-career, leading to raving jealousies and marital stresses. This episode was BAFTA nominated, and is delicious.
"That Was Tory" is a slightly darker or slightly more twisted tale of frustrations and an unusual link between a woman who has been summarily dumped and her sort-of friend's slightly lonely husband.
"Similar Triangles" coquettishly explores the eroticism of forbidden love. "He'll See You Now" stars Susan Sarandon -- in an award-winning performance -- as a garrulous and nutty stage star, opposite her staid Jewish psychoanalyst, whose patient and quiet demeanor is in stark contrast to her volatile instability.
"The Muse" broaches the tawdry worlds of creative writing, publishing, and literary acclaim, and stars David Suchet as a self-doubting and self-limiting wannabe serious writer, stuck in a rut of churning out snide comic strips and children's books. "Cheap Day" is an odd musing on the dreams and travels and temptations of a suburban wife, caught up in indecision and complacency.
"Sleeps Six" is a meaty venture, starring Ben Kingsley, as a filmmaker whose producer and former film partner, Jeremy Child, threatens to drive him and his wife and everyone around them mad when he arrives on the scene of their vacation villa in France with enough emotional baggage to sink a ship.
My favorite episode is "Oxbridge Blues" for its charm and wit. My second favorite is "Sleeps Six," for its meaty performances and plot. All in all, this series is a testament to Raphael's wonderfully fruitful creativity and gift for plot and dialogue. Intriguing.
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