Office Christmas Party
Another reminder that allowing your cast to madly improvise instead of actually providing a coherent script with a scintilla of inherent logic often leads to…
Here is one of the year's best and most provocative thrillers and maybe it says something that it's a 91-minute installment of a Swedish TV series. Why see it at the movies? Because it's so very well-done and looks better on the big screen. "Henning Mankell's Wallander" played to great acclaim in Sweden, and a British remake starring Kenneth Branagh was on PBS' "Masterpiece Theater." It's another in a series of first-rate crime dramas from Scandinavia.
This self-contained episode, titled "Revenge," begins when a smallish Swedish city has a total power blackout. That happens as Kurt Wallander (Krister Henriksson), the police inspector, is just celebrating his new lakeside home. He takes charge, finds a power substation was destroyed by a perfectly timed blast, and later learns that a town councilor was shot dead in his home during the blackout.
Thus begins a taut police procedural in which Wallander and his men (and one new woman trainee, not entirely welcome) find a murder wave under way. The other victims are a woman who ran a local youth job placement agency and a nurse in a hospital. All are shot 17 times with a similar handgun. What possible link could there be among them? That's the puzzle.
Wallander is the popular 62-year-old hero of a group of novels by Henning Mankell, the best-selling Swedish crime novelist. The inspector lives alone, except for his beloved dog, tends to be morose, is a good cop and a liberal idealist.