Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Law Order Criminal Intent - The Second Year|
Actors: Kathryn Erbe, Vincent D'onofrio, Jamey Sheridan, Courtney B. Vance, Leslie Hendrix
Genres: Drama, Television, Mystery & Suspense
From the most successful franchise on television comes Law & Order: Criminal Intent - The Second Year. Experience life on the wrong side of the law as perpetrators plan and execute the crimes that lead them into the fascin... more »
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Reviewed on 9/28/2009...
I enjoy watching this series because Vincent D'Onofrio is outstanding as Detective Goren!
0 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
Criminally Good TV as the Show Hits its Stride
A. G. Corwin | 09/24/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I was not a Law and Order fan. Sure I have seen the original and SVU, but something about the format never resonated with me. Solving the crime halfway through seemed abrupt and packaged, despite the wealth of acting talent the shows have produced. Having said that, I have become increasingly impressed with Criminal Intent, starring the ever intriguing Vincent D'Onofrio. Season 1 saw a show that was in its birthing phase: acting was occasionally hit or miss as the actors developed their characters. Season 3 was released on DVD prior to this season, but thankfully this does not create continuity problems as each episode and season stand alone as a set piece drama. So you can watch in any order and still be part of the drama. This is a show that is hitting its stride in the second season, and well worth the buy.
Vincent D'Onofrio is just short of brilliant as the character of Detective Robert Goren. He invokes a spirit that is both intriguing and whimsical, provoking the audience to understand the psychology of both crime and criminal. He sees and hears what most do not. He is also a master manipulator of emotion, as seen in the interrogation room, but just when you think he has gone too far or is showing his dark side, he taps into the emotion of the moment and shows a new side to his character. Anyone who saw Full Metal Jacket and how powerful he was in his brief 15 minutes, will appreciate the depth and range he brings to this character. Hands down, the finest pure actor on TV today.
Kathyrn Erbe, Jamey Sheridan, and the ever cool Courtney B. Vance round out the cast as the partner, Captain, and district attorney respectively. Their roles are mainly to support Goren, but given the second billing, they play the roles well. Erbe is a nice partner to D'Onofrio, but the writers have yet to let her carry a show's dramatic arc. Everyone loves Sherlock Holmes, but everyone wants to see Watson get the spotlight once or twice. Sheridan does his best as the Captain, but his role is limited and is fairly interchangeable with any other cop show. Vance, the man of cool, brings a distinguished acting career, a great wardrobe, and a no nonsense attorney's search for justice to ADA Carver.
The 23 episodes of season two are solid, the plots are often inspired by real life crimes just familiar enough to make you think you know who did it. Guess what, it's usually not who you think. The DVD box set may be light on the extras, but we watch Law & Order for the drama, and just finally having Season Two fills the hole on the shelf. Overall, Criminal Intent showcased the best acting of any of the L&O franchises, and you begin to wonder how long they can keep this up; How long can each episode intrigue you? For me, I'll be staying tuned to find out, and can't wait for Season 4 of this great series to be released. Recommended.
Everything comes together in this season
calvinnme | 12/04/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"To me this is the season of Law & Order Criminal Intent where the show came into its own. I think this is where the Holmes and Watson-like partnership of Goren and Eames really began to gel.
Kathryn Erbe is great as Detective Alexandra Eames, Goren's partner, who is the no-nonsense fact gathering detective, seemingly content to stay out of the limelight. D'Onofrio plays Robert Goren the "Renaissance Man Detective/Psychologist" in a way that is not only believable but intriguing. I can't think of another actor who could pull off such a role and not have it come across as somewhat silly, such as when Adam West as Batman used to solve those riddles from the Riddler by making huge nonsensical leaps in logic.
Vincent D'Onofrio, however, is quite appealing in the role as the multi-faceted and slightly geeky detective with vague shades of the more obvious sociopathy he confronts in his suspects. Rather than stealing the show by being overly macho like your typical TV cop, D'Onofrio does so by daring to be weird. He allows his geekiness to lull people into a false sense of security and then he pulls off his sneaky magic. He'll pretend to be unfamiliar with what is and is not valid testimony in order to mention inadmissable evidence while on the stand in court, or he'll spill something or knock something over to catch a suspect off guard. He delights in toying with arrogant suspects like a cat with a mouse, but he is careful to be sensitive to old ladies and children. Just as he starts to show the faintest signs of macho behavior, he'll jump up and declare "I must get to a library before it's too late!" In fitting with his character, D'Onofrio will take up long blocks of time just thinking, but somehow this does not slow down the pace of the show. That is because of how he manages to turn thinking into a kind of performing in itself. In the midst of the show's action he will pause mid-sentence. He looks around and wrinkles up his face. We wonder what it is he could possibly be pondering - what is it that he has just noticed that the rest of us have missed? The audience already knows who committed the crime. The fun of it all is watching D'Onofrio figure it all out then use his cunning to prove what he knows.
As for individual episodes, "Anti-Thesis" was probably the best episode of the season. The one-on-one between Goren and arch-criminal Nicole Wallace is outstanding as she is one of the rare villains to successfully turn the tables on Goren. Nicole shows up again in another excellent episode "A Person of Interest", which happens to be the season finale. In it, Detective Goren is accused of instigating the supposed suicide of a murder suspect, but the plot unravels, as many fine CI plots do, to reveal a completely different, more sinister suspect - Nicole. If anything, this episode made me respect Nicole even more, for her calculating and so-far infallible shrewdness, providing the perfect foil for Goren. The look on Goren's face when he first thought that Croyden's death was his fault was very poignant. This is really the only episode in which Goren's confidence in his perceptions is truly shaken, and it's heartbreaking to watch. If Goren is Sherlock Holmes, Nicole is truly his Moriarty.
Another great episode that was bizarre even by this series' standards was "Cold Comfort". An old senator dies and his son and daughter are fighting over his body. The son wants him buried according to the father's wishes. The daughter wants him cryogenically frozen so they can be together in years to come. So far, so bizarre. She has the legal paperwork, so it looks like she's winning. Unfortunately for her a quick trip to the bathroom results in a knife to the upper thigh and a very bloody death. Then things get complicated. Who did it and why? The answers are convoluted but clever and as usual Goran and Eames unravel the story piece by piece and are led to a powerful man who it seems will stop at nothing for his family. It turns out that the late senator had suffered from early onset Alzheimer's, but miraculously recovered, and the previously mentioned powerful man has a son suffering from the very same disease. The daughter's plans for freezing the senator would have denied the powerful man the ability to carve up the dead senator's brain and have it studied in hopes of finding a cure for his son. It's not a series classic, but it does keep you guessing.
In summary, this is probably the best season of Law & Order CI, and I highly recommend it."
The best season of all
Naomi Tilley | Victoria, Australia | 11/24/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Of the five and a bit seasons that Law & Order: Criminal Intent has run for, Season 2 is arguably the best season. Every episode is compelling, and there is none of the heaviness that has dragged down the quality level of some episodes in later seasons.
We see Vincent D'Onofrio and Kathryn Erbe at their prime in this second season, attacking the storylines with vigour and enthusiasm. This is the season that cemented Detectives Bobby Goren and Alex Eames as one of the best TV cop partnerships ever.
The episodes are all excellent. Particular favourites are 'Best Defense';
'The Pilgrim'; 'Con-Text'; 'See Me' and 'Probability'.
'Best Defense' has the detectives investigating attempts on the life of one of ADA Ron Carver's colleagues, and as they dig, they discover the man's wife may be looking to upgrade from her 'below-average' prosecutor husband. But as always, nothing is as it seems, and the case takes the detectives into dangerous territory and has them once again butting heads with Carver.
'The Pilgrim' has Goren and Eames on the search for a pair of potential suicide bombers, and in a race against time to prevent a massive tragedy.
'Con-Text' pits Goren against a young man who has had his mind warped by a self-help guru. And the big question is, did he murder his father and brother on his own, or was he manipulated into it?
'See Me' deals with schizophrenics, a subject that is close to home for Goren. Once again, as in the season 1 episode 'The Faithful', we are given a look at Goren's skill in dealing with the mentally ill.
'Probability' pits Goren against a wily killer, and puts his skills for picking out obscure patterns to the test like never before.
And on top of all the other wonderful episodes in Season 2, this is also the season that introduces Goren's hard-to-kill nemesis, the vicious Nicole Wallace. We first see her in 'Anti-Thesis' (the episode that gives us Goren's much-discussed middle initial 'O', and his date of birth), and again at the end of the season in 'A Person of Interest', where we see Goren being the one who is manipulated for once.
Season 2 is by far the best season yet of Criminal Intent, although season 6 is proving to be well worth the wait.