Customer Review

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Powerful performances to the very end, 24 Jun. 2014
This review is from: Wallander Collected Films 27-32 (The Final Season) [DVD] (DVD)
The final episodes of the version of Wallander more than live up to the high standards of the earlier series. Given the lead character’s situation – his gradual acceptance of intellectual decline and the onset of dementia – they have the potential to be mawkish, morbid or just plain miserable.

But instead each 90-minute (or thereabout) self-contained episode carefully balances the criminal elements with the personal storyline, and Wallander’s situation never overwhelms the murder/mystery investigation which forms the backbone of each stand-alone story.
Wallander’s complicated relationship with his daughter, now fully grown and an excellent investigator in her own right, is delicately portrayed as the father finally accepts that his child has matured into an equal. Eventually, it is he who has to seek her support as the reality of his condition becomes all too apparent. Similarly, his involvement with the much younger love interest, Bea, is nuanced and affecting – he clings to the solid comfort of physical contact when the mental moments of disintegration threaten to overwhelm him.
On top of all that, there are half a dozen absolutely excellent investigations to enjoy; each of them as fully developed and intriguing as ever.
And yes, it’s possible to pick holes in this final collection and suggest that no police detective who behaved like Wallander does would be able to keep up active duty, much less make brilliant deductive leaps which resolve tricky situations. Someone who forgets where he parked the car and then reports it stolen, and who can’t remember the names of suspects or even events which he witnessed, would surely be rumbled by his colleagues and quietly put out to grass. But that’s the brilliance of this series. It allows us to suspend our disbelief to explore a very pressing aspect of social concern… which is what crime fiction – Wallander more than most – has always done.

Poignant, thought-provoking and provocative, this subtitled, Swedish-language series is no shoot-em-up action-adventure. It’s intelligent, nuanced TV drama. If you haven’t watched the earlier episodes starring Krister Henriksson already then I’d suggest you go back to the beginning and start fresh, because the final series will make all the more impact if you’re acquainted with this interpretation of Mankell’s iconic detective.
8/10
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 24 Jun 2014 18:09:59 BDT
Hi Rowena
Thanks for sharing your review. This dvd has been on my watch list for awhile and being a completist I will purchase the set at some point. Having watching the beeb transmissions I was disappointed that the Bea arc wasn't concluded. I felt she almost rejected him in the penultimate episode but wasn't anywhere to be seen in the final. Did I miss something? Be grateful for your thoughts as you mentioned her. I felt this was lazy storytelling and an insult to us viewers to have this rejection so subtle, if that what it even was? Mind you, I'm no expert on women, so maybe it was clear as day to female viewers?? Best rgds
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