Trial and Retribution III

Thu 14/10/99, ITV

North attacked

The Lynda La Plante thriller concluded with good performances from the cast but sadly little in the way of sparkle from the writing. The cut-throat trial should have been more rivetting but the evidence was all one-sided from the beginning and late discoveries were too late for the jury to hear. However the role of DI Pat North as victim as well as investigator added more depth to the characters and the maggot episode was truly uncomfortable to watch. On the downside the ending was too much like wish fulfillment - of course as viewers we want to see the apparently guilty punished but giving us what we want doesn't necessarily give a satisfactory ending. Why show the vagaries of the justice system and the incompetence of police if you are going to make the guilty pay anyway? Still, worth watching... ****

Trial and Retribution

(7/10/99) The third story in this occasional Lynda La Plante crime series is, on the first programme's evidence, less gratuitously gory than the last but strangely much less focused too. The split-screen technique that made the previous stories so compelling and distressing is still evident but used for much more commonplace images, so much so that the eye is no longer drawn to the details. The characters however of North and Walker are as good as ever and Richard E Grant as the manic-depressive flasher and possible murder suspect is first class. Whether the plot is as worthwhile is yet to be seen but as the action switches to the trial I'm sure we'll be treated to a few more twists of La Plante's imagination. ****

Principal cast: DI Pat North
DS Michael Walker
Stephen Warrington
Karl Wilding
Kate Buffery
David Hayman
Richard E Grant
Anthony Higgins
Simon Callow
Writer and Producer: Lynda La Plante, Director: Jo Johnson

[Untold: Britain's Slave Trade - Walking With Dinosaurs - Watercolour Challenge - The World's Most Death Defying Stunts]

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