Typical excellence - and one extra feature
F. P. Barbieri | London UK | 11/06/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"A painter dies mysteriously, and various interests including his father, his erstwhile model and a mysterious rich man all seem to have something to do with it. Typically excellent fare from the Morse team, with the great John Thaw (a national resource, and his death from cancer was a dreadful loss) in typically grumpy and expressive form as Morse, and gorgeous, sunlit English landscapes - in Morse's England it practically never rains (not that I mind). But I hope you don't mind my saying that it is something else that makes this one episode absolutely unforgettable for me: the mysterious model - a single mother living a life of squalor in one of Morse's few genuine slum dwellings - is Nicola Cowper, a little-known English actress who is probably the most beautiful thing I have ever seen in my life. She simply burns on the screen like a flame. One does not wonder that one character is troubled by her almost to his death, and that another is willing to pay for her favours. But even if you do not share my taste for small, exquisite, intense women, you will still not regret buying this episode."
"Harry once said that meeting you was like shaking hands wit
Mary Whipple | New England | 08/20/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"When the body of the hard-drinking and hard-living artist Harry Field is found in a remote area, many days after his death, Inspector Morse (John Thaw) and Sgt. Lewis (Kevin Whately) investigate. One of the paintings left behind in his studio has been slashed, and another has been destroyed with acid. His wife has not seen him in over a week, and he has, unexpectedly, a great deal of money in his bank account.
As Morse and Sgt. Lewis investigate, Harry's "side businesses" of painting satiric coats of arms, copying famous paintings (badly), and imitating other painters' styles lead to several suspects--the head of an art school (who may have been having an affair with Harry's wife), the wealthy aristocrat who occupies a stately home a few hundred yards from where Harry was found, and even some of his "friends."
John Thaw is outstanding, as always, showing more emotion than usual as he tries to mentor Sgt. Lewis, who has decided to try for the inspector's exam, and Kevin Whately, as Lewis, is the dutiful assistant, always deferential to Morse but with his own ideas. Harry Field's wife, played by the talented Geraldine James, shows the full range of emotions, and her ability to produce floods of tears on demand is astonishing. Vania Vilers, as Paul Eirl, the aristocrat, is about as arrogant and "empty glove" as it is possible to be, a man whose very attitude inspires hatred.
For anyone who has ever studied art history, this episode is especially fun, as the assortment of Harry's paintings, new subjects done in the style of various artists, provides many opportunities for fun-filled guessing about the artists being copied. The photography, as usual, is first-rate, though the use of music is more subtle in this episode than in some others. The story evolves in a very leisurely manner, with few, huge dramatic moments, but it is great fun to watch. The biggest problem with this episode is its lack of a satisfying resolution, an unusual turn of events for a Morse program. n Mary Whipple
The World of Art
William J. Thor | Vero Beach | 01/18/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Many Morse episodes take us into the world of music. In this change of pace we are taken into the art world. We are exposed to amateur painting as well as paintings of the masters -- both originals and copies. Another change of pace is the opening music "Ain't Misbehavin'" sung by the composer Fats Waller. Later in the story it is reprised; however before departing too far from the standard for this series we hear excerpts from the last movement of Mozart's 23rd piano concerto, given liberal time during the second half of the drama. Morse demonstrates his more than adequate mastery of Latin as well as German. All this is icing, of course -- the real story is Harry, who leaves us quite early -- quite dead. With Harry's demise we must deal with his wife, father and plethora of aquaintances -- calling all of them friends would be a gross exaggeration. There is another dead body, an "Earl" who is an art collector, a model (who was used copiously by Harry) and various other participants. A nice "who done it?" or is it which of them did what? A very good Morse entry."
Pamela Wavde | Florida | 08/23/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I am buying all of the Inspector Morse series because they are all great video! I have not bought one that I did not like. I buy a lot of British made movies because they are by far better made than most American over payed and under talanted actors. Pamela Wavde"