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4.6 out of 5 stars
The Escape Artist [DVD] [2013]
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 11 December 2014
I came across The Escape Artist by accident, thought I'd give it a go as I'm a fan of David Tennant, and ended up watching the whole series in one sitting. To go into any great detail would be to offer too many spoilers, but suffice it to say, it's a cleverly constructed and well acted piece.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
David Tenant plays hotshot barrister Will Burton who has yet to lose a case and is the darling of his chambers and the envy of his rivals, chief among whom is Maggie Gardner (Sophie Okonedo). Will is happily married to Kate (Ashley Jensen) and they have a young son, Jamie (Gus Barry). The series opens as Will successfully defends a particularly nasty client, Liam Foyle (Toby Kebbell), on trial for murder, by spotting a legal technicality in the prosecution case, and chalks up another victory, at the expense of prosecuting counsel, the aforementioned Maggie.

We get glimpses of Foyle's domestic circumstances, which leaves us in very little doubt that this is a very odd individual indeed. One would, of course, have expected the not guilty verdict to have invoked within the accused a feeling of gratitude towards the person securing his freedom. However, with this individual abnormal is normal and things take a horrible turn for the worse at the expense of Will, his family and their continued well-being.

Following on from the equally outstanding, What Remains, this first rate film, originally aired on BBC as three one hour episodes, is suitably eerie with gothic overtones. As might be expected the whole cast is magnificent, with Toby Kebbell outstanding as the creepily evil Foyle. It examines the usual `law story' themes of guilt, retribution and the nature of justice and, although some slightly 'dodgy' plot points in a few places, is right up there with the best of BBC drama.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
I probably would not have chosen to watch this if David Tennant had not been in as a main character. It's not the usual type of TV viewing for me but he is such a brilliant actor that I felt it was worth taking a chance to watch something different to the norm.

The story really gripped me right from the start. It's just a little bit creepy and there are some great twists and turns - especially the ending. David plays a great part and it is interesting to see his performance as his cool, calm and collected character starts to unravel. It's hard to say too much because it would totally spoil this viewing to give the plot away.

However, he's not the only great actor in this because I have to say that Toby Kebbell who plays the antagonist puts in an absolutely stellar performance. He had me creeped out no end because he plays such a convincing part. I would definitely recommend this. It's the best thing I've watched in a long time.
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25 of 30 people found the following review helpful
on 13 November 2013
Will Burton (David Tennant) is considered the number one barrister by his peers; he has a perfect track record, never loses a case. Maggie Gardner (Sophie Okonedo), the number 2 barrister, resents him. She resents Burton even more when he is under the spotlight yet again when he successfully gets a sociopath called Liam Foyle (Toby Kebell) freed on a technicality. Liam Foyle had tortured, mutilated while still alive, and ultimately killed his female victim. Furthermore, he gloatingly admitted he's just not a very nice person. While Burton thought his client guilty all along and could barely conceal his disgust, he never expected his family to become the killer's target upon his release. And he never thought he would be forced to act outside of the law to protect them.

While some might question the authenticity of The Escape Artist's plot so far as legalities, and the actions of lawyers, barristers, and judges are concerned, all I can say is 'it's a film, meant for entertainment'. And entertain it does. It's a thriller, chiller, killer movie. This is a three-part, 180 minute, TV mini-series, BBC at its best, but it really needs to be watched in one stretch, which is how I watched it. The evil of Foyle is palpable and the tension nicely builds up. When it got to the last half hour, the sting in the tail, I thought the storyline and character actions had turned ridiculous - but that too was all part the plot. Of course, David Tennant and Sophie Okonedo were outstanding as always, and so was Toby Kebbell.

By the way, there is a bit where Sophie Okonedo's character, Maggie Gardner, is frightened after receiving a mystery gift left in her apartment. It's not very clear what it is and she doesn't say although the audience is supposed to know. Well, I can tell you. If you look up close you will see it is a caddy of tea. Earlier in the movie she is asked by Foyle (who is being held for yet another murder) what she is drinking and she snootily says it is 'tea; my tea'.

VJ - Movies and Books World
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on 12 November 2013
Crime dramas are ten-to-the-dozen at the moment - but 'The Escape Artist' is different as a mixture of an excellent story line and emotional acting have created a dramatic master-piece.

The basis of the drama is ingenious - a barrister who goes on the hunt off a man he successfully defended after he murders his wife (will say no more for those who have not watched). The switch between the lawyer and the criminal really allows us to sympathize with the characters. But no story is complete without good actors, and this has top class! Sophie Okowendo and David Tennant are amazing here and they bring an excellent script to life.

Overall, I think this is one of the best original drama's that the BBC has produced in recent years. I would recommend to all and I really hope that a second series comes along next year! 10/10 - Thank you BBC!
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on 12 February 2015
i don't usually write reviews often, mainly because I forget but I needed to share how fab this is. As a massie DT fan I had to purchase this as it was such a good price too. I love his portrayal of characters in these murder and justice storylines (like broadchurch) and this just took it to a whole new level. I watched it all in one night because I just couldn't resist the next episodes, the storyline and characters are all fab and if you haven't watched this yet, what are you doing?! Buy it! :D
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 14 December 2014
This is such a compelling well acted drama that will keep you guessing and fully entertained.Very moving and intelligent plot.All good.
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on 28 February 2015
Very dramatic, edge of your seat viewing! Cleverly written, amazingly acted by David Tennant - light and shade and all variations in between by DT, from confident successful barrister to loving father and husband, to grief stricken, to calmly planning and carrying out his scheme (trying to word this so no spoiler). Our villain is also very well acted - suitably chilling. all in all a super-duper drama.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 9 December 2014
Excellent...Cant believe I have only just discovered this...looking forward to episode two
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on 2 December 2013
One of the scariest and most suspenseful series I have seen in a long time. David Tennant heads a strong cast and the script is brilliant - just the right balance of light and dark, and not a word wasted. A must-see for those who appreciate high quality British drama.
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