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The Wire: The Complete Fourth Season
The Wire The Complete Fourth Season
Actors: Dominic West, Wendell Pierce, Sonja Sohn, Lance Reddick, Aidan Gillen
Director: Daniel Attias
Genres: Drama, Television
UR     2007     13hr 0min

With the fall of Barksdale and the ascent of young Marlo Stanfield as West Baltimore's drug king, the detail continues to "follow the money" up the political ladder in the midst of a mayoral election that pits the black in...  more »

     

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Actors: Dominic West, Wendell Pierce, Sonja Sohn, Lance Reddick, Aidan Gillen
Director: Daniel Attias
Genres: Drama, Television
Sub-Genres: Drama, Television
Studio: Hbo Home Video
Format: DVD - Color - Closed-captioned,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 12/04/2007
Original Release Date: 01/01/2005
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2005
Release Year: 2007
Run Time: 13hr 0min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 4
SwapaDVD Credits: 4
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 0
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Languages: English, Greek
Subtitles: English, Spanish, French

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Movie Reviews

Don't miss this
Olukayode Balogun | Leeds, England | 06/21/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The story so far... (Don't read any further if you don't want to know any detail of what happens in this Season of the show).

On street level, Stringer Bell is dead, Avon Barksdale is back behind bars and the cold and wilful Marlo Stansfield (played by Jamie Hector) looks like he's squaring up to be crowned king. Preston "Bodie" Broadus (played by JD Williams) is the only true Barksdale soldier still holding it down but finds it's a whole new game with a whole new set of rules. Meanwhile, the drug dealers' nightmare that is Omar (played by Michael K Williams) has a new protégé in tow and he's as busy as ever. The scene when he and Marlo finally come face to face is pure TV heaven.

On law level, political involvement in the Major Crimes Unit sends its best personnel off in all different directions: Lieutenant Daniels (played by Lance Reddick) gets promoted out, Detectives Kima Greggs (played by Sonja Sohn) and Lester Freamon (played by Clarke Peters) are squeezed out - and back to Homicide - and Detective Jimmy McNulty (played by Dominic West) realises he's running the risk of losing his soul and goes back on patrol. He also gives up the booze and tries to become a family man. The end result of all this is that no one is really up on the wire and by the time the incredible number of bodies being stacked up in vacant houses by Marlo's two lieutenants Chris and Snoop (played by Gbenga Akinnagbe and Felicia Pearson) come to light, there are so many of them, the task of solving the crimes seem pretty much unsurmountable to the shocked law enforcement personnel.

On City Hall level, Councilman Tommy Carcetti (played by Aiden Gillen) does the unimaginable and wins the mayoral elections in Baltimore but finds it might be the beginning of his battles rather than the end.

And if all that were not enough, in the middle school system, the 'No Child Left Behind' programme is shown up for what it really is, while 8th graders - some, like Michael (played by Tristan Wilds) and Dukie (played by Jermaine Hawkins) with drug addicted parents; some, like Namond Brice (played by Julito McCullum) with drug dealing parents - dad Wee-Bey (played by Hassan Johnson) is in prison and mother De'Londa (played by Sandi McCree) wants her little boy to grow up and be just like his daddy - and tragically, some with no parents at all - Randy (played by Maestro Harrell) is in foster care and Sherrod (played by Rashad Orange) is taken under wing by Bubbles (played by Andre Royo) of all people - are left to their own devices and to the lure of the streets. Some of the younger kids like the streetwise and smart-mouthed Kenard (played by Thuliso Dingwall) and the car-stealing, joy-riding Donut, so small he can barely see over the steering wheels of the cars he jacks (played by Nathan Corbett), we don't get to see their parents at all. Ever.

And this is not even the half of it. The scene is thus set for the fourth season of this incredibly articulate HBO series and on many levels, primarily due to the focus of school-age children, it might prove to be the most explosive season of all. With its awesome ensemble cast, "The Wire" continues to draw the highest praise from the most unexpected of quarters all over the world. Don't miss this. And don't let the complex storylines, unglamorous settings or gritty (and often violent) scenes and colourful language put you off. It's like watching real life or reading a novel. In the real world, situations do not usually get resolved within 50 minutes, just as they don't get tied up neatly within a chapter of a book. It was appointment TV for me on the FX channel earlier this year and I so cannot wait for the DVD. This is without a doubt, the best thing on TV.

PS. I've deliberately refrained from using the B word because I've come to understand that it upsets certain people and I totally understand why.

We could be missing the point though, with the utmost respect. The stories that are being told here - and they are just stories by the way; "The Wire" is not a documentary series or even a docudrama - could be told from Washington DC, Miami, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Detroit or any major US city and still be just as authentic, and just as believable. I don't believe The Wire is a statement about a particular city. I think the creators and writers have just gone with the location they know - and love, it has to be said.

I don't feel it's a statement about America either, particularly. Drug addiction, drug wars (the so-called wars being fought against drugs and the wars the drug dealers are contantly fighting amongst themselves), the proliferation of guns in our communities, political corruption and, (as is highlighted in this particular season), deficient child educational systems in particular and the way children are collectively being failed by the very society that is supposed to protect and nurture them in general, are all evident all over the world if we know where to look.

IMO, these are stories about human nature and the different ways in which man's actions affect the world we live in. That's what makes "The Wire" so fascinating."
Another spectacular season
N. Durham | Philadelphia, PA | 09/11/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The fourth season of HBO's critically acclaimed The Wire picks up after the explosive events the conclusion to the third season, as cop Jimmy McNulty (Dominic West) finds himself patroling the streets of Baltimore and seemingly out of the loop (McNulty is relegated to more of a supporting player in these episodes than ever before) as this season focuses on the coming election between Mayor Royce (Glynn Turman) and Tommy Carcetti (Aidan Gillen), and a group of young corner kids getting ready to go back to school. What makes this season of The Wire so surprisingly compelling isn't the drama between the cops and the crooks like we've seen before, but what this group of young corner boys (Maestro Harrell, Julito McCullum, Tristan Wilds) experience and the choices they make, which not only effect their own lives, but inexplicably effect the lives of everyone else involved as well. In the meantime, new kingpin Marlo (Jamie Hector) makes even more of an impact as the cops try to nail him, Herc (Domenick Lombardozzi) finally gets his stripes, Prez (Jim True-Frost) becomes a teacher, and Omar (Michael K. Williams) gets in over his head when he goes toe to toe with Marlo. By the end of season four, it is apparent that the end is near, and that McNulty and his crew are sitting on a powder keg that will be as explosive as anything that has ever been seen on HBO. Undoubtedly one of the finest and most realistic TV dramas ever crafted, The Wire is once again spectacular entertainment."
No spoilers but a huge recommendation!
Bob Rousseau | Seattle, WA United States | 09/10/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"If you have seen The Wire in its previous three seasons and wondered whether this one measures up, the answer is "absolutely yes". If you haven't seen the show at all, what are you waiting for?

Previously I would've said season 2 was my favorite, but I think this one surpassed it. It is astonishing to me that the show gets better and better. We continue to see deeper facets of characters we are familiar with, and we get a group of new ones that become vividly etched in our consciousness very quickly. Pat Moran Casting in Baltimore deserves an award for consistently finding strong actors for the show, including for this season, a good-sized group of early teens and younger.

"The Wire" IS the great American novel that so many have talked about writing "some day". David Simon and his fellow scribes were driven to paint a realistic gritty portrait about life in a contemporary American industrial city and we have all reaped the rewards."
The best season of the best show ever
R. Chong | Slums of Bev Hills | 12/25/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)

"There isn't much I can say about the show because if you follow it, it's like a cigarette addiction you can't kick where every episode is like the puffs after the Thanksgiving Day meal. If you hate the show, you're likely one of many who can't stomach the show for various reasons; its intelligence, honesty and raw power that oozes talent, sincerity and mastery of a broadcast medium that's long sunk into decadent masturbation. Perhaps it's best you order the complete season of Friends or some other fantastically shallow show that makes it comfortable to be a simple couch potato who's forgotten that the world can be a little disturbing.

The Wire, since the first season, has been the most amazing show created in a long time. In classic HBO form, it is very different in the way it stands out for its boldness, risk taking and iconoclast ambitions. Every season seems to add more power and momentum to the greater themes of generational loss of the struggling people in our society, not only those in social perils, but ones who find themselves ethically and emotionally challenged by the political economic predicaments of the urban world and it's social hierarchy.

The perils, pitfalls and random incidents of modern bureaucratic failures arrive at perfection in the writing, development, cinematography, and telling of stories all interwoven into a quilt of a collective drama. No one has ever made a show about middle school children with so much depth and insight. And this is not some "Stand By Me" barf bag of sentimentality that one can only relate to in a romanticized vision of childhood. No, this is the honest and painful look at the lives of children who are forced to choose the path of lives only to be betrayed with the knowledge that their choices were premade for them and their hopes and innocence were a temporary reprieve from the reality of their urban hostility.

The story is not just Baltimore and the kids there but in all of the broken cities and communities all over this great and terrible country where the currency of hope will never catch the inflation of opportunity. The story follows a group of 8th grade boys growing up in the dark world that the last 3 seasons have acclimated us for. One by one, by random accidents or choices, their lives slip deeper into da' game where the cops, bureaucrats, and the street players await to indoctrinate them into the world most of us would prefer not to look. The show is brilliantly acted and the kids are more than just believable, they're as real as we were at some point in our lives when the veil of innocence was still partially covering our view.

There's never been a show or movie aside from maybe "Fresh" that's been able to show us the story behind the induction into the world of street corner drugs, violence, and the thug life that seems to engulf our imagination but not our sympathies. The Wire delivers this with the hard hitting punch to our teeth with emotionally stirring power that has become the signature of brilliance and horror. The professional and local cast are seamlessly peppered (sorry Snoop, but girl, you're too flavorful) and are all amazing in the most spell binding storyline that I can only describe as being the greatest modern tragedy ever put on screen.

"Reality TV" is the fascination and sheer voyeuristic pleasure of watching petty emotional outburst in manipulated circumstances. There is another reality that exists in the imagination that craves the essential and the necessary; the yearning for a mother's love, a child's hatred that desires murder, the knowledge of good pitted against the instincts to survive, and tragedy of not knowing the high price of exercise choice in game where everything has consequences. Such realities are offered in this show, without compromise, without apologies, and without the anesthesia of sentimentality. Unlike traditional television with its familiar formulas, censored language and condescending themes that make us numb to what is real drama, this is a show that makes us question who we are and what kind of world we live in without allowing us to easily turn our heads away from the hard truth to the easy lie that is the story of America."