Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Department Q Keeper of Lost Causes TV film in Danish

BBC TV 4 film  Saturday 15th October 2016 one off Danish Film Department Q. The Keeper of Lost causes based on a book and which been followed by two other films although these are not to be shown I watched but I cannot say it was an enjoyable experience. Following an incident when one of a team of three detectives is murdered and a second finds himself paralysed, the third who was also shot but survives to physically recover is relegated to permanently close the accumulation of cold cases and is appointed an enthusiastically Muslim with a taste for loud contemporary music. His assistant selects the first batch of cases with a parade of photographs and which includes one, Carl, the reluctant boss knows something about the case of a young woman politician who is believed to have committed suicide disappearing from a ferry leaving her brother with what first appears to be severe learning difficulties from head injuries in a car accident which killed their parents.

The unravelling of what actually happened is thorough and clever and early on we learn that the young woman was in fact kidnapped and is being kept in a decompression chamber which limits the confined area and also enables the perpetrator to changing levels of physical unpleasantness. There is a credible method for of food and water dealing with sanitation and the provision of food and water but it stretches credulity that the woman is able to survive this limited environment for year upon year.

As this is a one off TV showing and the film is not on general release I am not inhibited about revealing the story which emerges.  A boy is travelling with his younger sister at the back of a family car and is overtaken by a second car in which a young girl looks out and they interact, but she places hands over the eyes of her father who is driving in front of her and this causes the accident in which everyone is killed except the boy who is badly affected, the girl and her brother. The boy is understandably affected by what happened although the girl given her subsequently life appears less so. The boy is prone to violent outbursts is placed in a children’s home where he has one friend who he can exercise influence.

The detectives establish that the young women have attend a conference and are able to acquire photographs taken at the event and follow up the men with her. One of these turns out to be the friend of the boy at the school, but it is discovered that he also has appeared to have disappeared in a boating accident and later from the use of CCTV they are able get confirmation that the man at the conference is the surviving boy and not the friend. As the detectives begin to track down the culprit, still not knowing if the young woman is alive they are warned and then stripped of their authority pending disciplinary enquiries. To add tension, the perpetrator reveals himself and therefore why and warns the young women that the time is approaching when he uses to tank for her to give her an excruciating painful death.

Fortunately, as tension mounts and when it looks that have failed to rescue the woman before she is killed he sees something which suggests she is being held in a situation where a petrol powered generator is being use. The main detective is nearly killed while the assistant although shot is able to disabled and brutally kill the assailant. The begin to recover in an appropriate decompression chamber in hospital with uncertainty about her eventual state. It was the persistence of the assistant befriending the brother, who appears more traumatised than physically damaged who establishes that the photograph is not that of the man believed to have disappeared but the boy at the home and circumstances in which he went into care.

The detective is rewarded with a medal and a return to his previous duties but he elects to continue with the work, with his assistant and a full time Secretarial assistant/PA. As I saw I thought the film unpleasant and the story full of questions.  6 out of 10 no more.

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