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The Shadow Line [DVD]

4.5 out of 5 stars 125 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Chiwetel Ejiofor, Christopher Eccleston, Kierston Wareing, Malcolm Storry, Rafe Spall
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: 2entertain
  • DVD Release Date: 4 July 2011
  • Run Time: 399 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (125 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B004P9MUSM
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,848 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
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Product description

Product Description

A gripping conspiracy thriller starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Christopher Eccleston, Lesley Sharp, Sir Antony Sher, Rafe Spall, Kierston Wareing and Stephen Rea.

Detective Inspector Jonah Gabriel (Ejiofor) takes on his first case since being shot in a botched police operation that left his partner dead. The new case involves investigating the murder of recently pardoned, drug baron Harvey Wratten. On the other side of the criminal divide, Joseph Bede (Eccleston), a former associate of Wratten’s, is moved to make his own enquiries.

As Gabriel, dogged by amnesia and suspicious colleagues, follows a complicated line of investigation and Bede becomes increasingly desperate to see through a massive drugs operation that will enable him to step out of the business forever, the enigmatic and ruthless Gatehouse (Rea) emerges from the shadows to bring the story to a shocking climax…

Special Features:
Deleted Scenes

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
It is indeed a great tv series. I followed it with interest thanks to the excellent cast performing an excellent story where sometimes you do not seem to understand it all, anyway I - an Italian loving to enjoy performances in the original languages - wonder if british people can catch EVERY word the players speak, or do they have to show subtitles to understand what is spoken. These productions are so careful to anything, but the sound of words is often too quick or grumbled or fading to nothing. It happens too many times. Oh, I have to say that such lack of, let me say: education, may also be found in our Italian tv series. Once I heard a famous French actress (I believe it was Edwige Feullière) who stated that ‘farsi capire è il primo dovere di un artista’ (to speak clearly is the first duty of an artist). May I hear some english gentleman about what I have claimed? Thanks.
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This is an excellent 7 hour BBC mini-series about police corruption, drug trafficking and human frailty. Pitch dark, and no important character is without fault or sins.

The performances are terrific. Chiwetel Ejiofor does very solid work as a detective returning to the job after having a bullet lodged in his brain when his partner is killed in a shooting. His memory has been damaged, so he can't remember that night, or if he and his partner were doing cop work, or were playing ball with the other side. It's a complex character, a man tortured by literally not knowing himself, not knowing his own secrets. Christopher Eccleston also does great work with an unusual and complicated role. If Ejiofor is a good guy, who may have been a bad one, then Eccelston is a bad guy with the soul of a good one. He just wants to get out with one last big score to help his sick wife, without hurting anyone. Stephen Rea is a lot of fun, if a bit one note as an ice cold super-baddie, and Rafe Spall creates a terrific, very different kind of scary bad guy -- one who is so odd, almost goofy, and quirky that it's hard to know when he's kidding, or when he'll suddenly go off in a big way. All the smaller roles are filled with top notch actors, making this a thriller that relies far more on complex behavior than shoot-outs for narrative drive and tension.

There are a few frustrating plot cheats along the way, but less than most stories in this genre (the fact that it's generally so damn good, makes the few wonky moments stand out more.). Director-writer-producer Hugo Blick has a great eye for color and noirish framing, and a feel for messy morality that serves him very well here -- and even better in his more recent mini- series "The Honorable Woman." If you liked that, there's a good chance you'll like this, and vice-versa.
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The dialogue is frustratingly peculiar. Everyone is a smart arse, knowing and unreal.
It is as if they are acting at acting. The close up scene shots are dwelled on, but add absolutely nothing.
The emotional content is melodramatic, I could feel no attachment to any character, it felt like a series of cliched shots had been stiched together.
The characters talked with stilted, phoney wisdom, producing a feeling of wanting to slap them and tell them to get on with it.
As another reviewer has written, it is wooden and indulgent.
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Excellent
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This was just top notch entertainment. Right from the first scene, the series just rattles along. The characters are engrossing and beautifully developed, with some great performances from all the cast. Chiwetel Ejofor is superb, playing Jonah the policeman coming back to work suffering from amnesia. As a copper who wants to do right, struggling with his loss of memory, his pain is etched all over his face. The dialogue, for the most part, between the characters just crackles along and the tension, at times, is almost unbearable. Yes, the final episode, does feel like there were too many things happening, but this did not spoil the entertainment at all. This is a series where everybody is at the top of their game. Fantastic!!!
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Format: DVD
This BBC 7-parter had been sitting around unviewed since way back last year. Finally gave it a spin at the weekend - well that was it, pretty well impossible just to watch one part with the next one sitting there waiting for you! Gripping, each episode leaves you wanting the next one, as I write this it's 5 down, 2 to go. Brilliant performances from everyone, particularly the young Spall (with a great David Walliams impression), Ecclestone and the spooky Mr Not-so-nice guy from Stephen Rea, and Anthony Sher.
Possibly a bit heavy on the violence for some, but a must see - watch this and be thankful we've still got a BBC to produce this sort of quality programme - there's so much more to TV than Midsommer Murders!!
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Hard to fault this fine thriller. Excellent acting all round and I was great fan of the Spall role. Good twists and turns and some fine characters created. I feel the story could have run to more episodes rather than having to, at times, quickly explain what was going on. Rather like The Killing it needs 20 or so episodes.This is the sort of drama that must be explored..well thought out, produced and performed.
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I came to this straight after watching my spiral 3 dvd and to be honest found the first episode a bit flat..

.. but by the end of 2 I was hooked,the way the story unfolds,the way we are suddenly taken in a different direction and at the end of the journey it all made sense,mind you have to think about it..

The few minuses for me was 1) the sound quality of the interior scenes every clacking footstep , every scrape of a chair ,echoey voices .. sort of thing you associate with a cash strapped "B" movie 2)the minimalist music score that sounded like it was destined for one of those cheapo "50 tune" door alarms that all sound the same 3) The guy who played Gabriel's immediate boss ,totally lacking in any onscreen prescence and therefore believability (if that is a word !)

However ! the rest of the cast were at the very least excellent with a special mention to Mr Gatehouse brilliantly written and realised..There were also some very smart visuals,little cameo's really,the final motorbike ride for example..
To anyone that thinks Scot and Bailey is the ultimate in crime drama I wouldn't bother,anyone for quality clever crime drama this is a must see....it will be a very shady journey but well worth getting onboard
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