Person of Interest DVD Review

The US government has a secret machine that can spy on you every minute of every day: By combining national crime statistics, digital CCTV footage and every digital conversation you’ve ever had, this machine can predict when a citizen is planning to commit, or provoke, a violent crime… But what if the government chose to ignore the data because you’re not important enough? 

 

 

This is the concept behind Person of Interest, the staggeringly entertaining US TV thriller from Jonathan Nolan ; co-writer of The Dark Knight  and The Dark Knight Rises. Like Gotham City’s silent protector, New York City is protected by a reclusive Billionaire who uses his vast resources to protect the innocent people from untimely ends. That, however, is where the similarities end: The machines creator, Howard Finch (Lost‘s Michael Emerson) is not a typical man of action. Handicapped by a permanent limp and less beefed up than a Tesco burger, his money and his machine have left him wondering how many lives the machine could have saved, if he could take direct action. Haunted by his inability to help, the philanthropist decides he needs partner capable of intervening in the countless atrocities the machine predicts. Enter John Reese, brilliantly played by the savagely smooth Jim Caviezel. Reese, a CIA deserter, is more than physically capable and seeks redemption for unspecified moral atrocities committed during the War on Terror. Together, Reese and Finch form a highly effective team determined to use the machines data to save innocent people. Of course, their efforts earn unwanted attention from cops and criminals alike, meaning the duo spend most of the series looking over both shoulders. 

Each of the 23 episodes is a brilliantly paced, self-contained, mini-movie with tight scripting, brilliantly choreographed action and a high emotional pay off. With production duties over seen by both Nolan and the every busy J.J Abrams, the series has such high production values and a sheen that elevates it far above the competition: Not since 24 has a TV series made such great use of its budget. The supporting cast are also worthy of a mention here to, Nolan and Abrams have made great use of their contacts by lifting great actors from their previous projects for even small roles. Brett Cullen brings mystery to a small but pivotal role in the later episodes; Cloverfield‘s Michael Stahl-David is equally effective in a recurring role. However it is Oscar nominee Taraji P. Henson who ends up stealing most of the scenes: Recurring character at the start, joint lead by the end of the series… It is her frustrated NYPD detective that develops the most interesting arc throughout the season. Despite the wonderful ensemble, Reese and Finch remain the core of the series with Emerson and Caviezal’s chemistry providing some wonderful, Lethal Weapon-esque, buddy-cop bickering as well as a genuine friendship that clearly grows in importance to both of them.

Person of Interest provides a fantastic portion of action, suspense and drama in its first season. The confidence of its producers and writers is clearly growing as the episodes continuously improve upon each other and story-threads are being skilfully woven to form a more intricate and rewarding finale. It may not be the best show on TV right now, but it is definitely among the front runners: Following its current trajectory, one or two seasons from now, it could be the biggest show in America. Pick up the first season on DVD or Bluray and join the bandwagon early: Remember…you are being watched.

Person of Interest season one is released on DVD and Bluray on 18th March.

You can catch the latest episodes every Sunday on C5 at 10pm.

About The Author

Liam graduated from the University of Kent in 2012 with a first class degree in Film Studies. Whilst studying at Kent he discovered his passion for cinema criticism by questioning the merits of as many examples as possible'; from Hitchcock's The Lodger, to The Hangover Part II. Liam's cinematic range encompass' genres and auteurs far and wide, however, the fusion of technology with outstanding storytelling is where his key passions lie: Therefore, the work of James Cameron, David Fincher, Steven Spielberg, Christopher Nolan and Peter Jackson forms the bulk of Liam's must see catalogue.

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