Wednesday, July 11, 2007
Jesse Stone: Death in Paradise (2006)
Recently, when Alan Smithee was recovering from food poisoning (again), he happened upon a Magnum, P.I. (1980-1988) Marathon on cable TV. After watching several episodes, he remarked this isn't nearly as lame as I remember! Tom Selleck was always entertaining, but with the Jesse Stone movies, he surprises by being genuinely interesting.
Stone Cold (2005) was an above-average TV movie with Selleck subdued and occasionally menacing. But Jesse Stone: Night Passage (2006) astonished. Bleak and unrelenting, JSNP was better than several theatrical films Alan Smithee has seen of late, though he has not yet been to Ratatouille (2007).
Jesse Stone: Death in Paradise, then, was a step backward. Selleck is credited as a co-writer, and he demonstrated why good films use professional writers. His Jesse Stone had stopped drinking, and he was far less interesting for it. Alan Smithee began to wonder if all involved were unaware what was interesting about the first two films.
A viewing of Jesse Stone: Sea Change (2007) should determine the direction the franchise is heading. Night Passage may not be as great as I remember. Perhaps I simply had too much cough syrup again.