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Donna Leon's Commissario Guido Brunetti 5 & 6
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The change in actors initially threw me and might throw you too, but then think of it as the James Bond movies and which ever Bond it is along with the various Q's and M's, it still works and works well. I had to do a double take on the new Brunetti as Uwe Kockirsch bears an uncanny resemblance to French actor, Armand Assante. That aside as well, Kockirsch holds his own and brings Commissario Brunetti to convincing depth.
As for the continued series, well,for all of the scenic beauty of Venice Donna Leon shows us a seedy, darker side with Brunetti and crew doing their best to scrub it back to its glow through her pen.
Good stuff here and a nice break away from the car chases and shoot 'em ups that seem to occupy most other police detective stories.
Episode 5: DEATH AT LA FENICE. After a famous conductor dies from cyanide poisoning during the intermission of his concert, Brunetti probes into the maestro's past, and uncovers a shocking picture of immorality and ruthlessness - as well as a legion of bitter enemies... some of whom have held a grudge for many decades. Based on Donna Leon's first Comissario Brunetti novel...
Episode 6: FRIENDS IN HIGH PLACES. Brunetti's housing nightmare begins when a clerk from the land registry office tells him that his apartment lacks necessary paperwork. When the same clerk dies "accidentally," Brunetti begins to investigate, and learns how the real estate market in Venice really functions.
And, of course, you get to see the streets and buildings of Venice.
P.S.- Look also at Episodes 7 and 8.
The shows are simply magnificent. Everything about them: the actors, the scripts, the music, the plots, the scenery.
I have not read the books. Sadly, I have never been to Venice. I came into the series cold and at first, admittedly, I found the episodes a bit slow. But then I realized that this show is not your normal one-hour (or is that 40 minutes?) SVU. It takes its time. It is languid and although the subject matter can disturb, it is in essence calming.
So you need to go with the flow. The plots and subplots wrap around each other, and ebb and flow. The music swells and the beauty of Venice stupefies. There is really nothing finer than to sit down and fall into an episode of Brunetti.
Somewhere early on in the series the two lead actors (Brunetti and his wife, Paola) change. I was at first despondent. I liked the first Brunetti! But I have come to love the sexy, charming, yet boyish Uwe Kockisch. I have come to know his co-workers like my own co-workers, and his family has become my family. When his mother (and the actress who played her) passes away, I cried.
I have become invested in Brunetti's children, Raffi and Chiara, as they experience various growing pains and turn into wonderful adults. I laugh at his silly and vain boss, and smile at the all-knowing and alluring secretary. And I adore Guido Brunetti. He is kind, loving, caring, progressive, funny, smart, determined, courageous and occasionally silly.
I see this review is more of a love letter than a critique. There you have it. I love this show. Each episode (movie, really, at 90 minutes) is a work of art. Brunetti makes me happy and I am so grateful to the MHz Network for airing it.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
NOTE: all or most of the German versions are available for streaming on the German TV station, ARD. Just open the web page and search for "donna leon". Read morePublished 28 days ago by Nic
One of my favorite detective series. Received exactly what was ordered in a reasonable amount of time.Published 15 months ago by Larry A.
I think the cast in the first 4 dvd's works best -- I prefer Barbara Auer to Julia Jager .as Paola even though Auer has dark hair. Read morePublished 22 months ago by Ellen
Great series, only small change with shift to a different actor for Brunetti after the first 4 shows.Published on July 30, 2014 by Robert Young