A black man is found dead in a goods waggon in a railway yard. The apparent suicide is soon found to be a murder. Was there a racial motive? A man has confessed to the murder but Wallender ... See full summary »
A black man is found dead in a goods waggon in a railway yard. The apparent suicide is soon found to be a murder. Was there a racial motive? A man has confessed to the murder but Wallender does not believe him. And why has the CID been sent in to investigate the murder? Then another black man goes missing. Wallender and his team must find out if there is a connection with the murder. Written by
The African is the 5th in this series of 26 Wallander movies made for TV. I'm watching them in order and briefly commenting on them as I go along.
Everyone of the Ystad police contingent is hitting their stride now, giving commendable performances. The scripts are getting better and better, tighter and tighter, more and more realistic and complex, and they are delving more and more into social and political backgrounds to the personal lives of the people involved. This time around, I'd mention Ola Rapace's good work as Stefan, plus the medical examiner, plus the lab expert, plus the detective with the beard. They are all good.
The IMDb rating of 5.6 is too low. This is the best episode so far and is as good as or better than big budget neo-noirs, and the movie itself is just about falling into that category as there is an air of fatality hanging over the proceedings when people can't escape their past or their present passions.
There are always some interesting bits going on such as the jealousies of various witnesses and suspects that parallel, for example, that between Linda and Stefan. This adds a very subtle comic relief at times.
This episode involves several Africans from Liberia and their tangled relationships past and present that bring them to Sweden. An unsolved murder is the focus, and before it's cleared up, there are several suspects rung in, and each has an interesting story. To make matters more interesting still, an outside detective, himself of foreign origin, is ordered onto the case by higher-ups with the intention of a speedy resolution and cover-up if need be. Kurt handles that aspect very diplomatically. I expected him to be blunt, but he played his cards more maturely. He ends up asking the man "Do you want to be a good policeman?" He must answer "Yes", and Kurt tells him "Then be one." Good solid writing.
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