Review by Lizzie Guilfoyle
JUST out on DVD is another fine offering from the queen of crime, Lynda la Plante – Framed which boasts an equally fine cast in the shape of Timothy Dalton, Timothy West and David Morrissey.
Framed is an intriguing tale of one man’s encounter with temptation. The man, Lawrence Jackson (Morrissey), is an ambitious young police officer, married with two young children. While holidaying in Spain, he discovers that escaped criminal, Eddie Myers (Dalton), long presumed dead, is, in fact, very much alive and extremely wealthy to boot.
Following his arrest and subsequent extradition to England, Myers agrees on a deal with a team of Scotland Yard detectives, headed by DCI Jimmy McKinnes (West) but on one condition – that his interrogator is none other than the young officer responsible for his incarceration.
Thrown together thus, the young man’s resolve is severly tested by the wiles of the older man and a life-style that, until then, he had only ever dreamed of.
Dalton excels as the master criminal, a character far removed from his James Bond persona. True, he’s sauve and charismatic but there all similarity ends. For beneath the affable facade is pure evil. His seduction of the rookie cop is unremitting and for one purpose only – to further his own ends. And Dalton plays it to the hilt, seemingly enjoying every second of his role as villain.
Morrissey, too, is excellent as the good guy seduced by the good life but it’s difficult to feel genuine sympathy for someone who so readily considers discarding wife and children, as well as long-held principles of morality, for something from which no good can possibly come.
As for West, he’s nothing short of superb as the dour detective in charge of proceedings. Even his facial hair (of which there’s a considerable amount) reflects facets of his character and is suitably stained from a life-time of chain smoking. And his curt one-liners are enough to make your granny blush.
Watch out too for Penelope Cruz – or Penelope Cruz Sanchez as she was here – in her pre-Hollywood days, which just goes to show what Tinseltown can do for a girl!
Framed is a taut psychological thriller that will keep you engrossed until the very end – until the final frame, in fact, which is as cryptic as they come. Damn!!