Paramount // 2010 // 673 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // June 16th, 2011
All in a day's work.
Enrico Colantoni (Veronica Mars) stars as Sergeant Greg Parker, a kind-hearted, soft-spoken bald man who also leads the Strategic Response Unit, an elite team of cops called into defuse high-pressure situations like terrorist threats and hostage situations. Parker is the number one negotiator, tasked with talking down psychos from building perches or helping plan raids. He's supported by a group of tough guys and couple of tough girls and for 16 episodes, spread over four discs, the Strategic Response Unit gets into adventures and stuff.
And then there was Flashpoint, a show I had no idea had enough pull to score three seasons. But here it is and, in fact, is in the teeth of a fourth season.
So there is an audience for bland, mediocre TV action after all!
That was dickish of me. Apologies. If you're a fan of Flashpoint I don't mean to offend. This just isn't my show. It wants to be my kind of show, what with the Alpha male barking and the explosions and the gun-toting and whatnot, but I was just left cold.
The plots are both over-the-top (all this crap happens in this city so frequently), yet simultaneously tedious (hint: the Old White Man Cabal is typically behind the diabolical schemes). You'll get plenty of the hand-held "Action Cam" kind of shooting, with tight zooms and frantic pacing -- I was in full zone out mode, however, unable to connect with the life-or-death circumstances or the characters involved.
Colantoni's Parker is the central figure and the most interesting guy. He's not overly macho, burying fire axes into the chests of terrorists, Bauer-like, but he's capable and intense and Colantoni is awesome in general. The rest of his team? Eh. Largely cookie-cutter and forgettable. Although Amy Jo Johnson is in this and she was the Pink Power Ranger.
I do appreciate the money the producers have thrown at the series. As hit-and-miss as some of the action stuff is, when these guys decided to blow stuff up or have our heroes mount up like the Regulators they are, it comes through on screen. The cinematic style of the mayhem helps dull the throbbing of what is largely a dispensable hourlong.
Shows receive solid 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen transfers, buttressed by 5.1 Dolby Digital tracks that can kick out some noise when the bullets fly and the dramatic suspense music notches up. Extras: behind-the-scenes, a profile of actor Hugh Dillon, a set tour with Enrico Colantoni and deleted scenes.
The SRU is demoted to parking ticket duty.
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Scales of Justice
* 1.78:1 Anamorphic
* Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround (English)
* Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (English)
* English (SDH)
Running Time: 673 Minutes
Release Year: 2010
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
* Deleted Scenes
* Official Site