Maybe you've been reading the reviews of the British miniseries Red Riding, which is evidently so potent a piece of storytelling that the entire three-part series has received a U.S. theatrical release. It arrives in Nashville today for a week's run, and you can see all three films together on Saturday and Sunday.
Is it worth the five-hour time investment? Is it ever, says Sean L. Maloney in this week's Scene:
Originally aired as a miniseries on the U.K.'s Channel 4, the Red Riding trilogy delivers the kind of satisfaction you get from watching a TV show's entire season in one Red Bull-stoked marathon. Based on David Peace's quartet of novels by the same name, a fictionalized version of real events, each installment takes place in a different year (1974, 1980, 1983). A different director helms each installment in media progressing from 16mm film to HD video: Julian Jarrold (Becoming Jane), James Marsh (the Oscar-winning documentary Man on Wire) and Anand Tucker (Hilary and Jackie).
If you're a fan of The Wire's kick-'em-while-they're-writhing-on-the-floor-from-a-broken-ribcage style of law enforcement, then Red Riding is right up your police-procedural alley. The story begins in Jarrold's 1974 with crime reporter and King Crimson fan Eddie Dunford (played by the magnificent Andrew Garfield, who just might make the upcoming Facebook biopic The Social Network worth watching) as he investigates a string of missing girls -- only to discover a web of corruption so vile and contemptible it takes another two feature-length films just to grasp its awfulness.
UPDATE: The cool Nashville podcast The Film Talk (whose co-host, Jett Loe, will introduce tomorrow's 11:45 a.m. screening of the full trilogy) did an interview with Red Riding screenwriter Tony Grisoni. Hat tip: Toby, dammit.