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Flashpoint: Season 1

4.6 out of 5 stars 1,008 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Flashpoint is a drama which depicts the emotional journey into the tough, risk-filled lives of a group of cops in the SRU (inspired by Toronto's Emergency Task Force). It's a unique unit that rescues hostages, busts gangs, defuses bombs, climbs the sides of buildings and talks down suicidal teens. Members of a highly-skilled tactical team, they're also trained in negotiating, profiling and getting inside the suspect's head to diffuse the situation to try and save lives.

Amazon.com

The Canadian police drama series Flashpoint examines the day-to-day triumphs and tragedies of an elite tactical squad as it responds to an array of high-intensity situations in this first-season boxed set. Character actor Enrico Colantoni (Veronica Mars) is the cool-headed leader of the Strategic Response Unit (SRU), a crack team of young officers skilled at handling dangerous situations beyond the ken of the police, including hostage situations, bomb threats, and robberies. The 13 cases covered in this set include a father holding a hospital staff at gunpoint when his daughter fails to receive a heart transplant ("First in Line"), a security guard turned bank robber ("Who's George?"), and a botched drug deal that turns deadly ("Element of Surprise"). At first blush, it's standard-issue cop show fare, with plenty of well-executed action sequences filmed in tight, often claustrophobic setups to ratchet up the tension. Thankfully, the producers of Flashpoint are equally interested in the emotional and physical tolls experienced by the team. There isn't a lot of gung-ho behavior on display here; the exceptionally capable and underrated Colantoni sets the tone with his constant refrain of "Let's keep the peace"--for the SRU, the less bullets fired, the better. We also get to see how extreme moments have lasting effects: Lane is twice dragged into investigations over his use of force in the first season, while other officers deal with posttraumatic stress when situations go wrong and good people die, despite their best efforts. Such elements help to elevate Flashpoint beyond the realm of TV shoot-'em-up, and if the end results aren't on par with The Wire or Homicide: Life on the Street, the show deserves some credit for aspiring to those levels of quality. Included in the three-disc set is commentary by director David Frazee on the series pilot, "Scorpio," which details the challenges of keeping the show visually exciting, while two brief featurettes offer conversations with Colantoni, his castmates, and crew members in regard to the show's production and its characters. --Paul Gaita

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Enrico Colantoni, Amy Jo Johnson
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Box set, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Paramount
  • DVD Release Date: October 13, 2009
  • Run Time: 550 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,008 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001QOGY5O
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #19,758 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Flashpoint: Season 1" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
"Let's keep the peace," is the catch-phrase uttered by team leaders as the Strategic Response Unit gears up for a hot call. It's hardly as adrenaline-inducing as "Let's roll," or "Lock and load," but I don't think it's supposed to be; in fact it sets the tone for the series. This cop drama is about saving lives and trying to bring sanity and compassion to out-of-control situations, not racking up a body count in the name of peace and justice.

Flashpoint is an undiscovered gem, hidden away behind a overused genre. If the phrases "SWAT team," "hostage negotiators," "Canadian television," and "police drama" don't exactly grab your interest, please do yourself the favor of at least reading this review and perhaps watching a couple of episodes. You might be glad you did.

The premise on its own is not terribly new: A fictional SWAT/hostage negotiation team takes on kidnappings, suicide attempts, bank robberies, and the like. What IS new is the approach. The writing of this show is steeped in the humanity, compassion, and psychological realism markedly absent from current TV.

The team members are deeply decent human beings who love their jobs and their team-mates, but Flashpoint does a superb job illustrating the real-life issues such as PTSD, stress, and guilt that come with such work.

Markedly absent is the fictional conceit that events don't have consequences. When team leader and sniper Ed Lane shoots a hostage-taker in the series premier, not only do they show his emotional reaction immediately after the shooting, they follow him through suspension, investigation, and debriefing by a psychologist.
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Format: DVD
Flashpoint is such a pleasure to watch. Smart writing!!! Superb acting!!! Real humanity!!! You come away with a respect for this law enforcement team that remembers that it is created to protect and serve. Many episodes have seamlessly transferred the goal of the team from being there to stop the sniper to rescuing him/her. The idea of getting as much background information on the situation so that it can be handled properly is such a no brainer. Is this really how the SWAT teams operate in Canada? Any chance that they could retrain some of our police teams here in the states? What a wonderful show.
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Format: DVD
One evening, I flipped through channels to find something to watch. At first, I thought it was another "crime drama" along the lines of "Cold Squad" or "DaVinci's Inquest". I still like the complexity of Chris Haddock's characters. So I was pleased to find another ensemble cast that had similar complexities and issues. One of the unique quirks of the writers is that the theme of each episode resonates through the relationship between the characters in some way. The characters are interesting, compelling, and "real" and the writers do a great job at not revealing every little thing about them right away. Their lives are woven into the storytelling to good effect. It is usually subtle but always present. The brief addition of Jessica Steen (the original Dr. Elizabeth Weir in "Stargate SG-1") in Season Two to fill in for Amy Jo Johnson was well done. So if you're not home, record it! You will not want to miss it!
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Format: DVD
I hate to admit it, but being Canadian I have not always had the highest regard for our domestically-produced television shows - we don't have as much money available for producting, casting, etc., and that has unfortunately shown up on the screen in the past. But with this show, I have been proven wrong. "Flashpoint" definitely stands up against any other show currently on the air, in production values, in the talent of the cast, in the writing and directing. It's compelling, involving television, with interesting and diverse characters and it consistently makes me proud to be Canadian, and homesick for my hometown of Toronto. Enrico Colantoni (who recently won the Gemini for his role on the show) and Hugh Dillon head a cast that has no weak points - even the smaller recurring roles are well-played and add to the overall team atmosphere of the show. I especially appreciate that the hostage and situational negotiations are shown as just as important - if not more so - than the action-oriented scenes. And, I have to say that I am especially pleased to have some age-appropriate eye-candy on my tv screen every week! This show definitely goes to prove that you don't have to be a teenager to appreciate a man in uniform.
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Flashpoint is an undiscovered gem, hidden away behind a overused genre. If the phrases "SWAT team," "hostage negotiators," "Canadian television," and "police drama" don't exactly grab your interest, please do yourself the favor of at least reading this review and perhaps watching a couple of episodes. You might be glad you did.

The premise on its own is not terribly new: A fictional SWAT/hostage negotiation team takes on kidnappings, suicide attempts, bank robberies, and the like. What IS new is the approach. The writing of this show is steeped in the humanity, compassion, and psychological realism markedly absent from current TV.

The team members are deeply decent human beings who love their jobs and their team-mates, but Flashpoint does a superb job illustrating the real-life issues such as PTSD, stress, and guilt that come with such work.

Markedly absent is the fictional conceit that events don't have consequences. When team leader and sniper Ed Lane shoots a hostage-taker in the series premier, not only do they show his emotional reaction immediately after the shooting, they follow him through suspension, investigation, and debriefing by a psychologist. The consequences of the shooting continue to appear through the series; Ed experiences flashbacks, is sued, and in season two the hostage-taker's son even tries to kill him.

Flashpoint does not stop at portraying the team in a compassionate and realistic light; the subjects of their calls are rarely black-and-white "bad guys." Psychologically disturbed individuals are portrayed as layered individuals with reasons for their behavior. Sometimes these reasons are morally justifiable, sometimes not.
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