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Inspector Morse - The Settling of the Sun
Inspector Morse - The Settling of the Sun
Actors: John Thaw, Kevin Whately, Colin Dexter, James Grout, Peter Woodthorpe
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Television, Mystery & Suspense
NR     2002     1hr 42min

Studio: Bfs Ent & Multimedia Limi Release Date: 10/22/2002 Run time: 105 minutes

     
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Movie Details

Actors: John Thaw, Kevin Whately, Colin Dexter, James Grout, Peter Woodthorpe
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Television, Mystery & Suspense
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Television, Mystery & Suspense
Studio: Bfs Entertainment
Format: DVD - Color
DVD Release Date: 10/22/2002
Original Release Date: 02/04/1988
Theatrical Release Date: 02/04/1988
Release Year: 2002
Run Time: 1hr 42min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 2
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Possiby the Darkest of All the Inspector Morse Films
Wilson Smith | 03/16/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The undertones in "Setting of the Sun" deal with war and the moral repercussions thereof. Its direction is, along with "Service of All the Dead," among the most bleak and atmospheric of the Morse films. Another commonality which this film shares with the aforementioned film is its convoluted-yet-plausible plot, consisting of a rather intricate conspiracy theory. It may take a couple viewings for you to comprehend, it certainly did for me. Inspector Morse is asked to present a prize for a crossword competition at a summer school in Londsdale college for a group of overseas students. A murder conducted in a gruesome manner takes place while Morse is dining with the group. It turns out his presence was not incidental; he was meant to be a witness. Jane Robson's, Morse's love interest and the person who invited him to present the prize, feelings for Morse are not mutual in this episode. The uncertain long-term implications of war are beautifully presented at the end with the innocent view of Morse's love interest's daughter, when asked about her grandfather, whose suffering during the war was the impetus behind the conspiracy."
Not one of the better films....
Dianne Foster | USA | 02/09/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)

"THE SETTLING OF THE SUN is not one of the better Morse films. The acting is stagy and overdone. The camera shots are bizarre and awkward. The hotch-potch use of elements from other more successful filmed versions of Colin Dexter's books, such as "Last Seen Wearing", "Last Bus to Woodstock" and "The Dead of Jericho" is insulting to the knowing fan. I am not sure this film is based on a book. I don't remember reading a book with this title, nor did I find the plot familiar. (I thought I had read all of Colin Dexter's 'Morse' books.) If it is based on a book, the plot is certainly far inferior to those found other tales. The tortured and unbelievable plot is overlaid with repetitious use of "Morse-isms" which are supposed to "wow" American audiences such as: Morse thinking over a pint in a friendly tavern; Morse driving his little red jaguar all over Oxford; Morse playing music and drinking at home; Morse unwilling to look at a body (three times with the same body). Morse's interest in the female "lead" is far from enthusiastic. It's almost as if he is going through the motions. Also, it's a bit hard to believe that this ditsy overwrought female has the least bit of attractiveness for Morse.Don't get me wrong. I love the little "English" touches a much as the next Anglophile. I just hate being taken for a sucker. However,if you are devoted Morse fan you will probably want to buy it. Just can't get enough of the late John Thaw."
Incredible conspiracy
Pamela Williams | Saginaw, Texas USA | 08/16/2004
(3 out of 5 stars)

"Stories satisfy and entertain when the plot elements are believable. Unfortunately, this entry in the Morse series is one of the less satisfactory mysteries--- precisely because the plot centers on a very intricate and complex conspiracy which would disconcert even the most credulous viewer. The conspiracy strained credibility to the breaking point mainly because it required the active involvement or at least passive assent of several individuals for the events to unfold as intended; moreover, its success also depended heavily on the premise that absolutely nothing would go wrong. Inevitably, things do go
wrong and the conspirators' desire for justice/revenge (for acts committed during World War II) is realized--- but at a very high cost to themselves. Another scarcely believable element of this story involves Morse's attraction to the female academic who helped organize the conspiracy. In most of the episodes, Morse becomes involved with women who are flawed but appealing. The role of "Jane" in this mystery is distinctly unappealing, since her behavior generally involved tearfulness, temper tantrums, and mood swings. Very difficult to conceive of Morse being attracted to such a neurotic character. Despite the negative commentary in the preceding sentences, however, I still recommend viewing of this DVD to any avid Morse fan--- if for no other reason than the opportunity to render a personal opinion regarding the believability of this dark conspiracy."
"I'm all for education--broadening the minds of foreigners."
Mary Whipple | New England | 03/23/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Dramatic and impressionistic opening scenes immediately capture the viewer's interest and involve him/her in dark mysteries. As opera plays in the background, Morse holds a program for an art show of "Images of Christ from Giotto to Dali, an aged cleric displays bleeding stigmata on his hands, and an Asian in a bamboo grove either kills or is killed. One of the most interestingly photographed of all the episodes, the Settling of the Sun is a feast for the eyes even as it reveals some darkly cynical attitudes at Oxford.

During an Oxford summer program for international students, a young Japanese man, Yukio Li, is found dead, his body laid out in a ritual pose. Several characters who have memories of World War II still have nightmares about the war, and they reveal their hatred of the Japanese because of wartime atrocities against British soldiers. As Morse begins to investigate the death of the student (referred to constantly as "the Japanese," rather than by his name), he finds that many characters are not who they seem to be, that some Asians are look-alikes for others, that some characters are secretly related to each other, and that Yukio Li may have been a drug smuggler, all elements which make this one of the less realistic, more melodramatic episodes in the series. The involvement of the foreign office suggests international intrigue, and a foreign service officer wants Morse off the case.

Other characters include a neurasthenic young female professor (for whom the viewer will feel no empathy), expounding anti-American sentiment for what she regards as American protection of Japanese war criminals; a second murder; and a patronizing attitude toward international students shown by all the principals.

Though the plot has problems, this episode is especially interesting because of the cinematography by Clive Tickner and the direction by Peter Hammond. Again and again, brilliant scenes capture the viewer's interest. Frequently, reflections in windows create an impressionistic vision of inside and outside activity, dripping water appears as a symbol throughout (water torture?), and the use of color, especially blood-red, adds depth to the presentation and visual interest to a plot that is too complex and full of coincidences to be plausible. Depicting a dark vision of humanity (and showing many of Oxford's staff in a less-than-admirable light), the Settling of the Sun is so magnificently photographed that anyone interested in the visual arts will be thrilled by this episode. n Mary Whipple
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