Critical Condition: MotherFatherSon

MotherFatherSon | TVNZ OnDemand, from Thursday

☆☆☆☆ “The headline of MotherFatherSon is that it stars Richard Gere in the first major television role of his career, playing a Rupert Murdoch figure in a series that sounds thematically similar to last year’s Succession. But the real draw is its writer: Tom Rob Smith wrote the breathtaking American Crime Story: The Assassination of Gianni Versace, and if he can bring even a fraction of that show’s claustrophobic tension to MotherFatherSon, it’ll be incredible.” — The Guardian.

☆☆☆☆ “If you want a stylish drama … Hollywood legend Richard Gere makes his British TV debut in this slow-burning family saga. Gere is a class act as US media mogul Max Finch who, when tragedy strikes, is forced to reassess his relationship with his wayward son Caden (Billy Howle) and his bitter ex-wife Kathryn (Helen McCrory) … Promises a great deal in its opening episode.” — Daily Mail.

☆☆☆☆ “Reviewers of Tom Rob Smith’s 2015 series London Spy loved Ben Whishaw’s performance, but even admirers found parts of it infuriating. Much the same mix can be found in his new eight-parter centred on Caden (Billy Howle), a broadsheet editor who’s cracking up … Everything to do with journalism rings false here … and, surprisingly, the family strand is equally frustrating.” — The Times.

☆☆☆☆ “Not only does quietly luminous actress Helen McCrory rescue this new drama by Tim Rob Smith from mawkishness, she transforms it into something transfixing … A slow-burning eight-part odyssey that will reward your patience. Stick with it. Sarah Lancashire is an added bonus.” — The Observer.

☆☆☆☆ “This glitzy eight-part drama of British power, politics and the media should draw millions of viewers. Whether that will be enough to keep them watching is less certain, as this opening episode gets off to a style-over-substance start that never delivers on its promise … There’s so little to like in these characters that it’s a challenge to sympathise when their lives start spiralling downwards – but given the talent involved, things might pick up as the series goes along.” — The Telegraph.

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