From the Irish countryside to London to New York and back again, Maggie reenters the world as a countess and shady art dealer. With her panache and charisma, she finds more than an auction,... See full summary »
Helen Mirren returns for the final time as Jane Tennison in the long-awaited Prime Suspect 7. Retirement looms for Detective Superintendent Tennison, but as her career draws to a close, the body of a missing schoolgirl is found, and the hunt for her killer begins. However, as Jane and her colleagues work to identify their prime suspect, the emotional fallout from the murder begins to take its toll on the battle-scarred detective. As the investigation gets underway, Jane is not only dealing with the imminent death of her father, but also an addiction to alcohol which she is desperately trying to keep hidden. There are plenty of twists and turns as Jane confronts her toughest challenge yet: herself, as the popular award-winning series reaches its devastating finale. Written by
The original 'Prime Suspect', an unusually tough police procedural thriller, was a landmark in early 1990s television, immediately making other hits series like 'Inspector Morse' appear tired and out-of-date. Since then, the series has retained some quality through its relatively infrequent outings, but still, the writing has not always been as good as in the first episode and in some cases has lapsed into the melodramatic cliché of the standard crime show. Gradually, I lost interest (I think about the fifth time that the whole direction of central character Jayne Tennyson's life was on the line if she didn't solve some murder in the face of the scepticism of her colleagues). But the series has always featured great acting from the incomparable Helen Mirren in that role, and in this final part she has arguably never been finer, there is some longer-term narrative development from the earlier episodes and Mirren exploits the character's growing history as the basis for a harrowing, wholly three-dimensional performance that almost seems out of place in a crime drama. Behind her performance, there's a nicely executed but less extraordinary tale of murder that could have come from any other cop show.
What's amazing about Mirren is how she truly inhabits the parts she plays: having recently seen her in Channel Four's 'Elizabeth', one can say the two series constitute a masterclass of televisual acting, ancient and modern. The series may be done; but the prime of Helen Mirren is far from over.
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