TV Review: Young Wallander (S2): Killer’s Shadow | I Still Like That Voice

Last season, I developed a fascination – some might call it weird – with our Title character’s (Adam Palsson) speaking voice. I had forgotten about that and rereading my review of S1 I realized that I also noted it this time around. But I digress, in the sophomore season of Young Wallander – inspired by Henning Mankell‘s best-selling novels – we have Sara Seyed, Yasen Atour (The Witcher, Strike Back), Ellise Chappell (Poldark), Leanne Best (Close to Me) and even Charles Mnene returning with Lewis Mackinnon (Victoria), Josef Davies (This Is Going to Hurt, The King), Tomiwa Edun (ADOW), and Kim Adis (Foundation) joinning the cast.

Last season we left Kurt Wallander, turning his back on his detective job after losing his mentor Hemberg during his first serious investigation. This time around Kurt is sucked back in with what first appeared as a simple hit-and-run case that inevitably turns into a bigger investigation.

The series was and remains an easy binge for a 45min episode mystery crime drama. The story flows quite well and keeps you entertain throughout, even if the most eagle-eyed or attentive of us might figure some things out sooner than they’re revealed or discovered but most of the time that delay makes sense within the frame of the investigation at play here.

The story behind the investigation this time might not be the most original, but the way it’s presented and portrayed by the actors does make a big difference. Josef Davies knocked it out of the parc because even when I thought he was a bit of a prick, I still felt for him before even knowing his story.

My man Rez got some justice this season, the way he was dealt with in the first didn’t exactly sit right with me, but the writers still played with my emotions when it came to him by putting him through some stuff. As for Kurt he’s clearly evolved since the last case, it’s more apparent with the “new” detective working with him, yet he still leads with his heart and still has some bad habits to shed.

The show is not afraid to tackle difficult topics. They always serve the story and the characters, it would have been strange if they were not brought up. More of an effort is made in terms of diversity – gender and race – but I admit that I was afraid that they’d demonize one of them – the new chief – instead they took his position and background into consideration regarding his behavior, which rings very true to me.

Young Wallander: Killer’s Shadow is an enjoyable show balancing complicated topics, flawed characters wrapped in an entertaining mystery.

Rating: 8 out of 10.

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Stay Close | Trailer

  • Writer: Harlan Coben (Novel), Daniel Brocklehurst
  • Director: Lindy Heymann, Daniel O’Hara
  • Stars: Cush Jumbo, James Nesbitt, Richard Armitage, Eddie Izzard, Jo Joyner, Youssef Kerkour, Sarah Parish, Daniel Francis, Bethany Antonia 

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Fear Street Part Three: 1666 | Subverting Some Expectations & Closing the Loop

The final installment of the ‘Fear Street‘ trilogy is penned by director Leigh Janiak with Phil Graziadei (Honeymoon) and Kate Trefy (Stranger Things). The most of the cast from the previous two movies return in new roles to gives us a glimpse at how it all started.

Premise: In 1666, a colony is gripped by a hysterical witch-hunt that has deadly consequences for centuries to come. The origins of Sarah Fier’s curse are finally revealed as history comes full circle. Meanwhile, the teenagers in 1994 and 1978 try to finally put an end to the town’s curse, before it is too late.

Review: I may have been pleasantly surprised by Fear Street 1994 and thoroughly enjoyed Fear Street 1978 but for some reason I expected Fear Street 1666 to be far more predictable than it was. Even before watching the trailer I thought I had this movie’s plot figured out. Since I suspected the story would be about pilgrims I thought this movie would be dealing with some religion-induced hysteria and Sarah Fier. I figured the young woman might either be wrongly accused of witchcraft and would turn to it trying to save herself before failing and cursing the town, or she’d be a good witch would who get caught to be killed and cursing the town in her rage. That’s how I thought this movie would probably go, but it wasn’t as predictable as that.

The actual story has shades of that the religious hysteria is a 100% there but it’s a little more interesting. The plot is constructed in a way that would make you think that the town’s problems is be blamed on Sarah because of who she is. I know it sounds like one of the plot I described but it’s not, I don’t want to spoil even if it’s a minor spoiler. Sarah kisses and run through other bases with someone people in the town think she should have. So when things starts to go awry When I look at this movie on its own, of course all eyes turn on her. I really like that aspect of the story, it was a good and original way to use the puritanical way of thinking of that time, a nice twist that could have meshed well with one of my theories about the film.

So I enjoyed how the story was developed and how well it works with the other two movies. The full circle aspect of it was great but I wasn’t as engaged while watching this movie than I was for the other two. I can’t really put my finger on it but I checked my phone many times and weren’t totally paying attention. Maybe it’s having the same cast playing different roles but I don’t think so. It might just be the time period it’s set in that I don’t vibe with, because the cast did a great job.

Fear Street 1666 brings the story full circle showing us how the curse originated and how it has lasted for so long. The movie is good and the Fear Street Trilogy is better as a whole. 1978 still has a special place in my heart but it’s a solid trilogy and I wouldn’t be oppose to see it evolve into something else. Have you seen this film? Did Sarah’s story surprise you?

Rating: 7 out of 10.

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Fear Street Part Two: 1978 | An Excellent Step-Up

After the entertaining surprise that was Fear Street 1994, the second installment of the trilogy inspired by R.L. Stine‘s book series of the same name brings us to the late 70s. Leigh Janiak is still helming, with a script co-written by Zak Olkewikz. This time the cast include Sadie Sink (Stranger Things), Emily Rudd (Dynasty, Electric Dreams), McCabe Slye (Destroyer), Ted Sutherland (The Walkind Dead: World Beyond, Eye Candy), and Gillian Jacobs (Invincible, Love).

Premise: In 1978, Camp Nightwing is divided by the campers and counselors who hail from the prosperous town of Sunnyvale and the campers and maintenance staffers from the downtrodden town of Shadyside, but when horrors from their towns shared history come alive, they must band together to solve a terrifying mystery before it is too late.

Review: For a trilogy that goes backward, I didn’t think they’d be much if any surprises in this movie. I was wrong. Fear Street 1978 is engrossing, maybe it’s the way the story unfolds, how the characters interact, the directing or the cast but I was captivated. It’s gruesome for sure and for someone like myself who avoids horror movies, because I get scared, I could watch this no problem.

Once again there’s a quite a lot of gore, just like if not more than in Fear Street 1994. The blood, feces and body parts didn’t faze me at all because I was so invested in the characters. I wanted some to die – Sheila – in fact I was waiting for it. I was also curious to see how those alive in 1994 came to keep their heads. Since the kills are swift and ruthless the characters are what sucks you in. They all have different dynamics and personalities, which keeps things interesting. There’s also a brilliant misdirect in the film that keeps your focus on one thing and it’s the wrong one. It was a nice surprise for me. Giving that the characters are the heart of this movie, it wouldn’t have work if the cast wasn’t strong. They are good and delivered excellent performances.

Fear Street 1978 is a captivating horror movie with little scares, a good story and greats characters.

Rating: 8 out of 10.

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Fear Street Part One: 1994 | A Fast Paced Entertaining Intro to Horror

Unless it’s a spoof on horror movies / slasher film I’m usually out, but for some reason this one intrigued me. I think it’s because of R.L. Stine giving that he writes scary stories for preteens I figure I could probably handle this one. Fear Street 1994 is the first part of a trilogy, each movie goes back in time until we get to the origin of what’s causing the evil the protagonists have to face.
Directed by Leigh Janiak, with a script by Janiak herself and Phil Grazaidei, the movie is inspired by the book series Fear Street by R.L. Stine. The main cast include Kiana Madeira (Trinkets), Olivia Welch (Unbelievable, Panic), Benjamin Flores Jr. (Your Honor), Julia rehwald (Mukbang Masarap), and Fred Hechinger (The Woman in the Window).

Premise: In 1994, after another series of brutal slayings, a group of teenagers find out that the terrifying events that have occurred in their cursed town of Shadyside, Ohio, may be connected to an evil force plaguing the town, and that they may be the next targets.

Review: For whatever reason that may be, if you’re not a horror fan, this movie might be the palatable kind. It’s a bit gruesome with scary-ish moments, enough to give it its horror / slasher movie cred and that’s about it. I had more fun watching this than I expected, whether it was because of the characters’ funny quips or the little twists and turns that are somewhat predictable, I was entertained.

However, if you’re looking thrills, the feeling of being on the edge of your seat, stressed out by what might happen, this might not be the movie for you. To me it kind of feels like an intro to horror before graduating to bigger scarier films. There’s still violence, blood, and even a bit of sex – first based only – but the tone is a bit light. The visual effects and the acting are solid. The cast does a good job, I almost felt bad for the fate of some of them. I also liked the soundtrack, there’s a lot of cool 90s music in it.

Fear Street 1994 has enough fairly gruesome moments to satiate horror fans while not scarring away the others.

Rating: 6.5 out of 10.

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