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The Crow Road [DVD]
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Available for the first time on DVD
Special Features: - Features footage not previously released on VHS - DVD extras include Iain Banks interview and commentary from the producer, director and screenwriter
"Annoyingly better than the novel in so many ways"
Superior BBC adaptation of Iain Banks's acclaimed and darkly comic novel in which teenager Prentice sets out to uncover the truth behind the mysterious and unresolved disappearance of his Uncle Rory. He finds that the truth lies under a tapestry of dark secrets shrouding his own family's past. --This text refers to an alternate DVD edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Featuring a strong cast including Bill Paterson, Peter Capaldi and Joe McFadden as the male half of the McHoan clan who live on the beautiful Argyll coast in their rambling country house.The storyline focuses on missing uncle Rory who never returned from a sojourn abroad and the rivalry between the writer brothers (Paterson and Capaldi) mainly instigated by elder brother Kenneth (Paterson) who never quite forgives younger Rory (Capaldi) for getting into print first before he disappears into the wide blue yonder. The McHoan sister is married to the charming but sinister 'Uncle Fergus' who lives in baronial splendor in his stunning castle on the shores of a mysterious dark loch.
Death is never far away from the central character, young Prentice (McFadden)..Kenneth's son who witnesses a series of family and friends die in usually tragic circumstances.
Sensitive soul that he is.He can't accept his fiercely atheistic father's brutal philosophical acceptance of these deaths and seeks answers.Just why does everyone he loves keep dying ? On top of this Prentice has to suffer further trauma as he watches older smarter brother played by Dougray Scott make a name for himself as a stand up comic and steal the girl of his wildest dreams-Verity- from under his nose !
Aided by the beautiful Ash his platonic girlfriend who happens to be a wizz with computers, Prentice gradually peels away the multitude of dark layers hiding the truth.
Beautifully,filmed acted and set.The whole 4 part series builds up to a powerful conclusion !
I had the pleasure of staying at Ardpatrick House on the Knapdale Peninsular where much of the Crow Road was filmed. Ardpatrick stood in for the McHoan family home. It was a wonderful experience and certainly enhanced a memorable drama experience.
Seriously though, you will never see a similar drama anywhere near as good as this one. Please do watch it, or read the book & watch it!
The acting here is superb, particularly from Bill Paterson. The story skips deftly between the present, Prentice's younger days, and even the childhood of his father and uncles, allowing the relationships between the characters to be fully realised and making it all the more heartbreaking when they break down. The extras don't amount to much unfortunately, with the audio commentary from the director and other crew a bit dry. Some contribution here from the charismatic cast (including such faces as Peter Capaldi, and even Supergran!) would have helped. Quite how this TV series compares with the book it's based on I don't know as I haven't read it but here's the author Iain Banks' opinion: "annoyingly better than the book in far too many places". There you go. Do watch this.
The BBC adaptation, while naturally missing some detail, is an exemplar of good an adaptation of a literary classic can be. No vital parts of the plot are sacrificed, and the narrative, even with flashbacks is clear. An interesting - and successful device - is the imagined series of conversations between Prentice and his missing uncle Rory.
Production values and acting are of a consistently high standard throughout.
For the BBC to have somehow made an adaption of such skill and care is remarkable- it genuinely adds to your experience of the story and is compelling, chilling and moving.
Special words should be said for Joseph McFadden as Prentice and Bill Paterson as Ken; McFadden is a charismatic narrator, and you never lose sypmpathy with him, even when he seems to be going off the rails.
Paterson's peformance is perhaps a lifetime best, and Dougray Scott, Peter Capaldi and Valerie Edmond all atmosphere as part of an excellent ensemble.
The Crow Road is everything that the British Novel and British TV Drama can and should be- challenging, entertaining, and serious in it's artistic intentions.
Truly a landmark production.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Well packed and arrived on time. This was a great series and I'm enjoying it a bit at a time so I have something to look forward to each week. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Bhillstead