Multi-ethnic neighborhood in the north of Montreal. A shootout breaks out between two street gangs, in broad daylight. A stray ball hits an (innocent) passer in the back. The suspects slip through the fingers of the cops.
Posted at 7:15 a.m.
Is this a recent article from the miscellaneous section of your Hurry favorite? Nope. It is rather the starting point of the excellent detective thriller larry, of the mythical tandem that created life, lifenamely author Stéphane Bourguignon and director Patrice Sauvé.
I watched the first three episodes of larry Monday, without blinking an eye, and I can’t wait to see the next seven, which will land on Tou.TV’s Extra on Thursday. For those who do not subscribe to this paying platform, be aware that Radio-Canada will deposit larry in its next regular TV season.
larry does not fit into the category of traditional detective series.
Of course, this dense and brilliant work contains a breathless investigation and unexpected twists, but it incorporates comedic touches and a personal drama that colors the entire plot.
All topped with psychedelic 1970s music and delivered in visual packaging evoking the classic film The French Connection by filmmaker William Friedkin. It’s downright captivating.
The Larry of the series title is a former undercover cop (solid Benoît Gouin) of the Montreal police, who was ostracized after a dubious tailing case, where he supposedly palled with organized crime. Bitter, disappointed and humiliated, Larry, 62, handed over his badge and weapon. For eight years, he has worked as a security guard in an anonymous building.
But the failure of his last investigation, coupled with an acute feeling of betrayal, still haunts him. The day his wife France (very fair Monique Spaziani) receives a gunshot wound to the spine, Larry activates “vigilante” mode.
First, because the guilt eats away at him. He was unable to protect his wife. He left her in the middle of an exchange of gunfire. He could and should have prevented the attack, frankly.
Then, because Larry refuses to face the trials that stand before him. His spouse of the past 40 years will never walk on two legs again. And the life they have built together will change drastically.
Larry flees all this in the parallel investigation – and not at all legal – that he leads in the streets of the Parc-Extension district.
Who shot his wife? Larry plunges into a disturbing spiral, which will cause both good and harm to the people around him.
Quickly, Larry does battle with Detective Sergeant Romain Félix (Irdens Exantus), who is overseeing the investigation into the shooting. Larry also falls out with the only friend he has left in the police force, Lisa Jackowska, played by Macha Limonchik. In fact, Larry is fueled by conflict and alienates almost everyone around him, including his daughter Annie (Alexa-Jeanne Dubé), who still suffers from his numerous absences from the time he officiated as a double agent.
In line with Jimmy McNulty of TheWire or Luther in the series of the same name, the antihero character of Larry skillfully blows hot and cold. In one episode, we understand Larry’s distress and we stand behind his quest for justice. In the following episode, Larry makes a reprehensible gesture and we would like to shake him violently, chives.
Larry’s neighbor, single mother Tara (Sharon James), will play an important role in the story, as will her 16-year-old daughter Selena (Michaëna Benoit).
The scenario woven by Stéphane Bourguignon is vast, rich and dense. The first episode, which ends with a huge punch, rolls at full speed and effectively installs the key figures of the story, including the boss of a criminal organization (Anglesh Major), a sleazy cop (Jean-Moïse Martin) and a hothead among bandits (Vincent Paradis-Montplaisir). Larry’s fellow security guard, the sympathetic and geek Jonathan (Simon Lacroix), serves as a humorous valve during the most tense moments.
Without divulging anything, you suspect that all the elements of the past of our loner Larry form a huge puzzle that the viewer will assemble over the ten hours of this thriller.
There is a lot of depth in the texts of Stéphane Bourguignon, who offers probably his most accomplished and intense series to date. I liked it a lot more larry that Fatale-Stationlet’s put.
My biggest downside? The crucial shooting scene could have been better choreographed. There is some slack in this sequence, which is slightly lacking in realism.
In the end, the author does not feel the shadow of a little fatigue.