Happy Valley 2014


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A new six-part drama for BBC One, written by Sally Wainwright and starring Sarah Lancashire as police sergeant Catherine Cawood. Catherine Cawood (Sarah Lancashire) is the sergeant on duty when flustered and nervous accountant Kevin Weatherill (Steve Pemberton) comes into her West Yorkshire police station to report a crime. He's reticent about the details and Kevin loses his nerve. The crime he was trying to report was Kevin's own brain-child, a plot to kidnap his boss's daughter and keep enough of the ransom to put his kids through private school. And now local drug king-pin Ashley Cowgill (Joe Armstrong) has put the plan into action, and Kevin's fantasy has become a grim and dangerous reality. The botched kidnapping of Ann Gallagher (Charlie Murphy) and its fallout unfolds... Catherine is used to picking up the pieces of everyone else's lives, but the hunt for Ann Gallagher will get right under her skin. Catherine becomes convinced that only by finding Ann alive and bringing her captors to justice can she avenge the death of her daughter.

Rental Formats:

Product Details

  • Feature ages_15_and_over
Runtime 5 hours 51 minutes
Genres Crime, Drama
Studio 2 Entertain
Rental release 16 June 2014
Main languages English
Hearing impaired subtitles English

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

82 of 86 people found the following review helpful By Antenna TOP 500 REVIEWER on 4 Jun. 2014
Format: DVD
Catherine Cawood, a tough but honest and decent sergeant striving to do her job in a rundown Yorkshire valley community, is consumed with anxiety over the release from jail of Tommy Lee Royce, the disturbed and violent young thug indirectly responsible for the death of her teenage daughter, by whom he fathered the grandson Catherine feels morally obliged to bring up, even at the cost of her own marriage. "What else could she do?" When Tommy becomes involved once again in serious local crime, her obsession with getting him back behind bars and out of her small grandson's life goes beyond the call of duty.

With its tongue-in-cheek title, since this must surely be one of the saddest former industrial valleys in Britain apart from the lovely scenery, the police thriller succeeds on all counts. It is compulsive viewing, filled with tense edge-of-the-seat moments, yet unlike many similar dramas is highly plausible, with no nagging holes in the plot twists. The quality of the acting is superb across the board, with a sharp script, many touches of humour to ease the frequent grimness of the theme and little need for subtitles.

It succeeds on several levels, not only as admittedly often bleak and bloody entertainment, but also in developing in depth all the characters as believable people, with their strengths and failings, and their complex relationships. The author even manages to evoke a little sympathy for most of the villains, including Royce, with some appreciation of the dysfunctional families and injustices which have moulded them. As the wealthy industrialist whose daughter is kidnapped observes at one point with unintentional irony, "all actions have consequences".
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33 of 35 people found the following review helpful By HD on 10 Jun. 2014
Format: DVD
This truly has been one of the most gripping TV dramas I have watched in a very long time. I must admit I came across this series by accident whilst searching through BBC iPlayer for something else, however having spotted Sarah Lancashire of whom I have always been a bit of a fan, I thought I'll give it a try. The series was already 3 episodes in by the time I discovered it therefore I had the chance to catch up, by the end of the first episode I was hooked and had no choice but to continue devouring the series. I will admit I'm not really a huge viewer of television especially crime dramas as they often tend to be extremely cliched however Happy Valley totally caught me off guard. The writing and story was absolutely fantastic, gripping from the get go and however dark the story matter I often found a slight comedic element to Catherine's character caravans excellent portrayal by Sarah Lancashire. As the series progresses you can't help but be dragged in to Catherine's fight and without wanting to give too much away if it wasn't already personal for her in the very beginning of the series by the third episode Catherine's fight becomes even more so. The acting all round is superb Sarah Lancashire is as I have already mentioned absolutely fantastic, the variety she brings to every character she plays surely can be compared only to some of the very best actresses in the business, she surely deserves much more recognition. Steve Pemberton is also in a strange way a delight to watch, Sibohan Finneran portrayed an excellent supporting character. Overall a sheer delight to watch although brutal at times but gripping British drama as it should be.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By prisrob TOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 24 Aug. 2014
Format: DVD
'Stuck in speed bump city
Where the only thing that's pretty
Is the thought of getting out

There's a tower block overhead
All you've got's your benefits
And you're barely scraping by

In this trouble town
Troubles are found
In this trouble town
Words do get 'round'

Lyrics to 'Trouble Town'- by Jake Bugg, theme song of Happy Valley

'HappyValley' is one of those towns so misnamed, that you wonder as you drive through, who in their right mind named this town. It took me until Episode 3 to really get into this series. Until then, it was one of those series with an interesting but violent story lines. But, then, the adventures and personalities of the characters hooked me. It is one of those series where you really come to care for the characters.

Sally Wainwright, who wrote 'The Last Tango In Halifax' wrote this series, and it has more of the tough, brutal, real scenes, we don't see in The Last Tango. The characters are very real, very complex and some are downright nasty. Sarah Lancashire plays Catherine Cawood, you will note her from 'The Last Tango In Halifax'. She is a Police Sargeant in this area, and this is her life. Her daughter hanged herself in the past year, and Catherine has not been able to work through this. She takes in her grandson. Clare, Catherine's sister, played by Siobhan Finneran, (O'Brien from Downton Abbey), is superb in this role. She is a recovering drug addict, working in a Mission and helping to care for the boy. The boy's psychopathic father plays a large role in this series, and a nastier piece of work you will never see. All of the police are well played and realistic. The area of Yorkshire in England is as beautiful as it is deadly.
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