Low Winter Sun

Channel 4, Thu 14, 21 Sep, 9pm

Corrupt cops have been ten a penny down the TV years. Everything from
The Sweeneyto The Shieldhave focussed on gung-ho anti-heroes who
bent the rules to their own ends, usually to net the baddies but not always
for reasons which benefited the community. The community here is a lush
Edinburgh, whose skyline director Adrian Shergold (Dirty Filthy Love, The
Second Coming) has clearly fallen in love with considering the number of
times the actors go on a rooftop, whether it is to have a fag or a fight.
The corruption in Low Winter Sungoes from top to bottom, so you never
know quite who to be drawn towards as your narrative guide. But when
you have an actor who dominates the screen like The Long Firm’s Mark
Strong (here swapping his Ye Olde London town cockney geeza accent for
an Auld Reekie radge one), it’s hard to concentrate on anything else. As
Frank Agnew, he is up to his elbows in it having helped bump off the real
villain of the piece, nasty rozzer Brendan McCann who is dubbed by his
partner and co-killer Joe Geddes (Brian McCardie) as ‘a sectarian bigot, a
misogynist and homophobe’. As the ring of truth starts to choke around
both Agnew and Geddes, the true reasons why they murdered McCann
begin to threaten their chances of getting away with it.
While the spectacular backdrop offers some sense of freedom and
escape for the characters, the brooding synth soundtrack lets us all know
that no one will come out of this without blood splashed all over their
uniforms. Despite some moments of horrible over and underacting, this is
an often intense and memorably corrupt experience.

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