Thursday, January 19, 2017

No Second Chance: First Place Whodunnit

I'm continuing to feast on the international television and movies Netflix has been bringing us, ranging from Nordic Noir (Dicte and many more) to Cuban cop (Four Seasons in Havana) to Israeli undercover (Fauda).   France is well represented in this, too, with the superb Spiral, which I'll review after I've seen the 5th season on Netflix for free (cheapskate that I am), and Marseilles, which was quite good.

No Second Chance is another French winner, which arrived in France via New Jersey, where Harlan Corben, the American renowned mystery writer, lives and works.   Corben not only wrote No Second Chance, but has a nice cameo at the end, along with Dana Delaney, the only actor American audiences will recognize in this series.

The rest are French, and all excellent.  So is the narrative, which unlike a lot of high-octane kidnap stories, comes packaged with a first-class, whodunnit puzzler.  A father is shot to death, a mother shot and left for dead, and their six-month baby is kidnapped.   The mother, a medical doctor, recovers and sets out to find her baby.

But that won't happen until she or someone else solves the puzzle of what happened in the first place. Suffice to say it's not what it seems to be, as the main detective is just on edge of realizing.   There's a gap of time in the narrative - which was somewhat necessary for one of the crucial developments in the ending - but I think the story would have been even stronger and tighter without it.

But that's a small quibble about a compelling six-episode series,  crème de la crème for international and indeed all television.

silk noir
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