Post image for DVD Review: THE TUNNEL: VENGEANCE (PBS)

by Dale Reynolds on March 7, 2019



What a send-off for a series! Watching the remarkable chemistry between Stephen Dillane as British cop Karl Roebuck and Clémence Poésy as French officer Elise Wasserman creates the kind of joy that only qualified actors are able to generate with viewers, making the thriller-series mindful of what art should be.

The second incarnation of the Swedish/Danish original (followed by the American version, both labeled The Bridge) brings on one more psychotic villain who murders for the pleasure of having the Anglo-French authorities try and bring him to justice.

Occurring in the middle of the Chunnel (The Channel Tunnel) is a crime that puts pressure on Elise Wassermann (Ms. Poésy) from her co-workers in France; it also brings undignified suspicion from Karl Roebuck’s (Mr. Dillaine) co-workers that he is more sexually interested in her (and why not?! one may impolitely ask) instead of concentrating on the various suspects.

Set mostly in the English town of Folkestone and the French city of Calais, this will be the last pairing for the electrifying duo, with a storyline that embraces the uneasiness of mid-Brexit hysteria, causing terrible refugee problems, added to by terror threats from soulless exiles.

The two have to face a toxic and petrifying folie a deux as life-and-death decisions are acted upon. Your knickers, as they say, will be in a twist by the ending, trust me.

One of the joys of this professional show is how existential it becomes in all the deep questionings – what price does one pay for doing one’s duty? – which makes for great tension and sad answers.

The production values are of a continued high standard, with the leads and support-characters well-delineated. Directors Anders Engström and Gilles Bannier make the most of the superb scripting (Emilia di Girolamo, Louise Ironside, Jamie Crickton, and John Jackson) and the crisp cinematography of Sam Care makes the visuals seem more real than real life.

A shame it all has come to an end. You will love it as much as I.

photos courtesy of PBS

The Tunnel: Vengeance (Season 3)
2 discs | 285 minutes | rated NC-17
released July 17, 2018
available on Blu-ray, DVD, and streaming at PBS and Amazon

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