The Silence

Silence, The (Cate Shortland, 2006) prod. Jan Chapman; two-part telemovie, broadcast ABC May 2006

The Silence (2006), directed for TV by Cate Shortland and written by Alice Addison & Mary Walsh, has all the usual elements of a cop show (as suggested by the misleading poster, right) particularly the kind of thing done in, say, New Tricks, but is much better than that suggests. It has a fine script, made the most of by all the cinematic elements working together. Roxburgh is always excellent, but I was surprised by these outstanding writers. I watched it a second time to check up on one actor (Jennifer Hagan, who'd changed a bit since Alvin Purple in 1971) but found I couldn't put it down, and had a late night.

Although Shortland and lenser Robert Humphreys (who shot her promising debut Somersault) throw some interesting shapes with the visuals, pic's main thesps have done better work elsewhere. Script is both far-fetched and banal. ... Emily Barclay burgles whole scenes as Treloar's cheeky assistant, but otherwise the pic's a misdemeanor. Leslie Felperin, Variety.


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