Tuesday, August 23, 2016
In THE NIGHT OF you start with A-list writers in Richard Price and Steve Zaillian. And Zaillian has become an A-list director as well. But here’s the thing: they actually deliver. How many times have you seen a marquee pitching match-up like Clayton Kershaw vs. Madison Bumgarner and the final score is 10-9?
But Price and Zaillian both pitch perfect games.
This was taken from a British series and adapted for US audiences. James Gandolfini was supposed to play the lead character (the rumpled lawyer) but tragically passed away. (He still gets an executive producer credit.) DeNiro was in for five minutes but he bailed (probably to take DIRTY GRANDPA or some other truly terrible role). John Turturro stepped in and gives the performance of his career.
And he still wasn’t my favorite.
The supporting actors were equally terrific. Notably Jeannie Berlin, Peyman Moaadi, Glenne Headly, Amara Karan, and of course, Chip Zien.
This is probably not a series you can binge. The intensity level is pretty high – especially when they go to Riker’s Island. This is OZ with better lighting. I think I’d last eleven seconds – and that’s if I had protection. What’s bizarre is that I watched an episode of this and then an episode of SUITS where their lead character Mike is in prison, and compared to Riker’s it is like a W Hotel.
Sunday is the finale. We’ll hopefully learn who committed the murder and whether Turturro will keep his cat? Now THIS to me is a cliffhanger (the cat part I mean).
By Ken Levine at 6:00 AM