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Old 05-05-2012, 07:33 AM   #1
Gary McCoy
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Jesse Stone: Benefit of the Doubt

For those of you who are fans of the late Robert B. Parker's detective stories (Spenser, Jesse Stone, Sunny Randall, etc.), the eighth Jesse Stone movie Jesse Stone: Benefit of the Doubt will be broadcast in HD on Sunday May 20 on primetime CBS.

Teaser: http://www.imdb.com/video/cbs/vi273589017/

Unlike the first four films, the fifth through eighth movies are original scripts, not based on a Parker novel.

Tom Selleck reprises his role as Jesse Stone, the Chief of Police in the New England small town of Paradise, Mass. The stories are beautifully filmed in HD with a solid supporting cast that includes Viola Davis and Kathy Baker as deputies. The Jesse Stone novels are tight and stylish "police procedural" stories, fully adult in nature and well written. Jesse Stone is a complex character who struggles with an alcohol addiction, his feelings for his ex-wife, his demanding job, and a series of beautifull girlfriends. Tom Selleck is at least 20 years older than the Jesse Stone character in the novels, but I'll have to say he has been uniformly excellant in the first seven films.

No, these are not action films. Most often, Jesse fires a single shot in a scene near the end of the film.

If you missed the prior broadcasts these were the earlier films:

Stone Cold (2005, available on DVD)
Jesse Stone: Night Passage (2006, available on DVD)
Jesse Stone: Death In Paradise (2006, available on DVD)
Jesse Stone: Sea Change (2007, available on DVD)
Jesse Stone: Thin Ice (2009, available on DVD)
Jesse Stone: No Remorse (2010, available on DVD)
Jesse Stone: Innocents Lost (2011, available on DVD)

Note: If you want to catch up, view Jesse Stone: Night Passage first, as the novels were filmed out of order, and Night Passage is the series beginning, relating how a drunken Los Angeles homicide cop got his job after a painfull divorce.

For reference, the Robert B. Parker novels are:

Night Passage (1997)
Trouble In Paradise (1998)
Death In Paradise (2001)
Stone Cold (2003)
Sea Change (2006)
High Profile (2007)
Stranger in Paradise (2008)
Night and Day (2009)
Split Image (2010)

Don't forget to set your TiVo's for the HD broadcast, Sunday May 20.
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Old 05-06-2012, 09:26 AM   #2
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Just waiting for Chief Jesse Stone and Commissioner Frank Reagan to cross paths at a police chiefs' convention. And perhaps throw in Honolulu Police Chief Thomas Magnum for a bonus.
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Old 05-07-2012, 10:18 PM   #3
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FYI, I just checked instantwatcher.com, and Night Passage, Death in Paradise, and Stone Cold are available on netflix streaming. I don't even have streaming, but this is the kind of thing I wouldn't mind watching on streaming vs on dvd. I suspect there aren't commentaries or other useful extras on TV movies.

(I'm not even sure how many of these I've seen.. I think only a very few.)
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Old 05-08-2012, 05:54 AM   #4
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I tried watching the streaming versions you mentioned but the video quality suffers greatly from the data compression used for streaming. I reccomend that you order the NetFlix DVDs as a better alternative. This series is shot on HD video, really has great Cinematography, and the area of Nova Scotia that subs for the Massachusetts setting has absolutely gorgeus scenery.

In truth, even the DVD versions are noticeably inferior to the original HD broadcast, and there are no BluRay disks available. CBS typically broadcasts this series on the Premier date, and repeats it once some months later.
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Last edited by Gary McCoy : 05-08-2012 at 06:00 AM.
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Old 05-08-2012, 09:51 PM   #5
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I almost never record anything in HD, even when I do have a working 1+ TB drive in my Tivo.. takes up way too much space. (RARELY I record a music show that one of my wishlists catches..)
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Old 05-21-2012, 08:12 AM   #6
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For what it's worth, I found the plot of the latest movie to be extremely sparse. Yes, I know that is Robert B. Parker's style, but there can be too much of a good thing. I would have appreciated a few more details in this latest case, it felt like a half movie.
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Old 05-21-2012, 01:46 PM   #7
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"Extremely sparse" is putting it mildly. The dog got more screen time than anyone else!

However, the repeated "I don't think I ever said that" was great.
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Old 05-21-2012, 01:53 PM   #8
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Exactly. I got it, he bottomed out morale-wise and then recovered, aided by a relationship with sultry torch singer "Thelma". Then he figured out who the real boss of the drug trade was, survived the attempted hit, killed the hit man, and Luther "Suitcase" Simpson returned. But it was all so sparse it seemed like some scenes were missing.

Either the writing or the editing seems to have been a notch downward in quality this time. Still some great shots of the landscape of Nova Scotia.
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