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Black Work
Score: 85%
Rating: Not Rated
Publisher: Acorn Media
Region: 1
Media: DVD/1
Running Time: 141 Mins.
Genre: Crime/Thriller/TV Series
Audio: English Dolby Digital Stereo
Subtitles: English SDH

Black Work stars Sheridan Smith as Jo Gillespie, a Police Constable whose life is turned upside down when her husband Ryan (Kenny Doughty), also a cop, is found murdered in an abandoned warehouse. In the blink of an eye, the life she thought she had is blown to bits as she discovers her husband was not only acting as an undercover cop to bring a dangerous gun-running gang to justice, but also had a completely separate life she knew nothing about.

Jo and Ryan had recently been growing apart as she and fellow officer Jack (Matthew McNulty, Jamaica Inn) have been growing closer. When Ryan is killed, she learns of his part in a three year undercover operation that results in a huge bust for the department. However, questions remain as to what Ryan was doing on his day off in the derelict warehouse and his superiors, namely DCS Hepburn (Douglas Henshall) and Chief Carolyn Jarecki (Geraldine James) must ensure that nothing was awry with Jack's behavior or they risk their slam dunk conviction in the case. Not satisfied that enough is being done to find her husband's killer, Jo begins her own investigation, which leads to more shocking discoveries. With her family under scrutiny, she struggles to hold everything together, even as the case seems to be neatly closed, but not to her satisfaction. As her digging leads to more danger for her and her children, Jo isn't sure who can she trust. Will she find Ryan's killer or find herself a victim as well?

Black Work is a dark mystery written by Matt Charman of Bridge of Spies fame. There's no levity here, but the acting is solid and believable, from Sheridan Smith, to Matthew McNulty, and even to the Gillespie kids Hal and Melly, played by Oliver Woolford and Honor Kneafsey, respectively. It's a quick jaunt at only three episodes, but it is interesting to watch Jo Gillespie's story arch and how her character evolves from a trusting wife and cop to an investigative demon who will not stop until she finds the answers to her husband's murder, even though he wasn't the man she thought. There are no special features and the case wraps up nicely in those three episodes, with quite a few shockers along the way. While nothing is left hanging, I wouldn't mind seeing P.C. Jo Gillespie in further adventures as the end hints at a promotion and bigger things for Jo in the future. If you enjoy dark crime thrillers, you may enjoy Black Work.

-Psibabe, GameVortex Communications
AKA Ashley Perkins
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