THE CLOSER: THE COMPLETE FIFTH SEASON
MOVIE: **** (out of 5)
BLU-RAY EXPERIENCE: **1/2 (out of 5)
Studio: Warner Bros.
BY KEVIN CARR
WHAT IT’S ABOUT
The award-winning TNT drama “The Closer” continues with its fifth season. Now that Brenda Lee Johnson (Kyra Sedgwick) is entirely in control of and has the trust of her crew, she is facing some new challengers. In addition to more horrible cases coming through Major Crimes, she struggles with helping out her wayward sixteen-year-old niece, some relationship woes with Fritz and her Internal Affairs nemesis who keeps butting into her cases.
WHAT I LIKED
There are so many police procedurals on television nowadays that it sometimes becomes hard to wade through everything and differentiate a show. “The Closer” manages to do that exceptionally well, even though the cast of characters is very similar in tone (and sometimes even storyline) as shows like “The Mentalist.”
The anchor to the show is Sedgwick as Deputy Chief Johnson, and she really brings a fantastic level of empathy and emotion to the series. Even though it’s a basic cable show not known for its edginess, “The Closer” heads down some very dark paths, in particular opening the season with an awful random act of violence.
The show also manages to balance the professional side (Johnson’s case load) with her personal life (her drama with Fritz and her niece, played by Sedgwick’s real-life daughter), and it also manages to blend them enough that both storylines can work in concert to deliver a solid episode.
The writing continues to be crisp and clever, and even though there are some recycled plots from other police procedurals, it manages to keep bringing new things to the table… even if that’s just creative ways for bodies to find their way to Major Crimes.
WHAT I DIDN’T LIKE
The big complaints I have about “The Closer” comes from what you’ll see in many cop shows. Why don’t any of these suspects lawyer up the moment they’re arrested? Why do people always deliver such a damning confession? Why does Johnson continue to solve cases based on some random comment that sparks an idea.
Ah, but such is the case with most police procedurals. Not being an avid watcher of the genre, I’m happy with the low key nature of these basic cable series and their ability to just tell an entertaining story each week rather than trying to reinvent the show.
By the time a fifth season hits DVD, there usually aren’t very many decent special features. However, there is an effort made with “The Closer.” This four-disc set includes fifteen episodes, several of which having unaired scenes. There’s also a gag reel and a “Seen at the Crime Location Map” which for the most part talks about the challenges to handle location scouting and shooting, but it also provides some decent behind-the-scene information.
WHO’S GOING TO LIKE THIS MOVIE
Fans of basic cable police procedurals.