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4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
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on 25 March 2009
This is based on the TV show - not on the DVD release, as it is not available at the time the review is written.

One of my best shows - why?
a) every situation is shown from multiple point of views - and we know what led to the hostage situation (usually this is just another somebody's tragedy). It does make it very difficult to judge or want the sniper to pull the trigger
b) the role of the negotiator (and also the price he pays for his role) is excellent and very rarely (if ever) shown as it is here
c) the sniper - when he pulls the trigger and kills - he has then his own hell to go through (not only the investigation but all the emotions inside him). This is not just a happy trigger like in most of these action movies.
d) all the above contributes to a very high emotional load in each episode - each of them leaves a trace in you - wondering what I would do if was in this situation...tough.

Highly recommended - to all.
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VINE VOICEon 19 April 2011
This is one of the best shows I have seen in a long long time.

It could have slipped into one of two holes. It could have been an action packed shoot 'em up which rarely works well on the small screen and probably wouldn't have been very believable. Alternatively, it could have turned into an overly detailed and consequently tedious procedural show. It manages to steer a path between the two. The show is based on a real life Toronto police unit similar to SWAT but with their own integral negotiators. This is a brilliant set up because every episode can go either way with a brutal violent conclusion or the culprit talked down peacefully. The issues are dealt with in a mature and considered fashion which rather excellently means that the person with the gun is not always the baddy.

The team is rather more imaginatively put together than in most similar shows. The team leader (Enrico Colantoni) is the cuddly negotiator whilst two bullet headed middle-aged men (Hugh Dillon and Michael Cram) are his subordinates. They have similar but different home lives and chat through raising teenagers on the way to work. A black junior policeman (Mark Taylor) and an Italian junior policeman (Sergio di Zio) have minor roles but occasionally get their moment in the limelight and both rise to the challenge when they do. David Paetkau plays the ex-special forces sniper who has transfered in. His difficulties integrating and changing his focus from killing to resolving the situation are well handled and his dark back story is mercifully not as overblown as it easily could be. The last team member is Amy Jo Johnson (the only american on the cast) who is the beautiful woman who has to struggle to maintain her position on the team.

Each show starts with a quick introduction to a perilous situation and then winds back a few hours to see how the problem started. We then build up to the point where police must start making life and death decisions. There is one running storyline which revolves around the actions of one of the cops in the first episode but generally these are self contained stories.

Okay there is the odd cliche. There are a few moments when the team storm in demand police leave their control rooms without bothering to get a briefing, the inevitable will they won't they is a little cheesy but forgiveable. I don't know enough about policing to say with any authority how accurate this is but Colantoni's brother is a Toronto cop which may have made a difference. There's regular use of police venacular (some of it pretty hamfisted but usually well done) and lots of gadgets.

Overall, I love this show. It's entertaining intelligent and I liked that I didn't know which way things were going to go in a lot of the episodes. Highly recommended and I can't wait for the next two series.
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VINE VOICEon 17 May 2010
Very well-done. Has the quality of a US show but with more intelligence and far less gungho cliches. I was impressed that every single episode is as entertaining as all the others. I really hope they develop the characters more next season - especially the heart-of-gold negotiator played by Enrico Colantoni, and the very funny 'Roman' tech expert - 'My people don't like woods.'
Flashpoint sets a new standard for a more emotionally complex but still action-packed cop show.
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on 4 March 2009
Excellent show, combines great storylines with an examination of how being a specialist armed police officer can take its toll on you. Definitely worth watching.
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on 17 April 2009
I was expecting a testosterone driven 'shoot em up' style police show. Whilst Flashpoint has enough of those moments to keep action fans happy, it also has a human, character driven side. I've been watching some of season 2 online and it keeps getting better and better - so, in response to an earlier comment, I think the show is definitely finding its stride.
There are no DVD extras which is slightly disappointing but the show speaks for itself. Well worth watching...
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on 9 August 2012
Anyone who picked up this show on Universal will have been completely misled on the Seasons/Episode numbering. There are only 13 shows on this DVD as in the original Canadian Series 1. As the seasons are shown it is also worth noting that when it went out in the USA they didn't show all the Canadian episodes from each series either. I too was misled until I looked up the show online. It isn't an Amazon/DVD distributor issue but Universal Channel who seemed to number it to suit themselves.
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Fraught times. Lives at risk. Often the one with the gun is not, though,a villain - merely a person under strain so immense that something has snapped. The psychological skills of the SWAT Team try to defuse crises which so easily could spiral out of hand.

13 episodes. Each begins with A SITUATION, then back-pedals to reveal the events leading to it. These are very human dramas - the desperate father threatening hospital staff, determined his daughter receives the heart transplant promised; a son at last turning on his control freak dad; a wife-beater confronted by his victim's sister; a bullied girl retaliating against her tormentors; a bank raid where all is not as it seems.

Coming over strongly is the concept of The Team as a family. Only working closely together can strengthen the chances each will see a new day. Always they are at risk. Not just physically. Anything may go wrong, subsequent tragic memories forever preying on the mind - perhaps even one of their own number destined to snap....

A no-nonsense series. No space-filling subplots. Taut scripts. Good cast. Throughout involving.

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on 16 April 2009
I first decided to watch an episode because i had nothing else to do. I'm glad I did. In the short time that this series has been running (it's series 1) it has developed, at the same time as relationships on set clearly have. Good acting and script writing make this a great series. The writing has to be credited - it does have an emotional effect on most watchers and it is easy to feel involved in the situation. It deserves a five star rating, and i just hope that there will be a second series (I do not know if there will be, but ITV seem to suggest there will be a second and third.. and so on.)
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on 8 November 2015
not too long like most shows and not too short, this is a brilliant tv series, cannot recommend it enough.
how can i recommend it?
its set in vancouver canada. there is nothing in the show that isnt involved with the story, ur given the story and it sticks with it. there is no life stories like most tv shows that are dragged out, no soppy eye batting from anyone either. its really genuine. one thing this show taught me is, its all about the hostage, bot the swat team, not the mad man with the gun, the hostage. great tv series. a diamond in the rough. i cannot recommend it enough. ever.
is it rewatchable? yes it is. most shows are not.
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on 21 September 2011
My husband and I thoroughly enjoyed this Canadian TV series. Set in Toronto it follows the Strategic Response Unit (SRU) which as basically the Canadian version of SWAT. I was slightly disappointed after watching the 1st episode as I felt it wasn't ended well but we continued on and the storyline from episode does run come up again in later episodes. Overall it was a very good series, we didn't really know any of the cast members other than the pink power ranger (Amy Jo Johnson) but they all acted very well. After finishing the 1st season in only a few days I was really disappointed to find that you can't get season 2 and 3 in the UK on region 2.
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