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The Bridge/Bron/Broen – written by Bjorn Stein (Update)


Sofia Helin as Saga Noren in The Bridge



The Bridge/Bron/Broen – written by Bjorn Stein (Update)

This just gets better and better. In Saga Noren, Stein has created a female detective to rival Denmark’s now rightly famous Sara Lund from The Killing series. As superbly played by Sofia Helin with an at times disturbingly evocative deadpan demeanour, this autistic, emotionally detached character is becoming as intriguing and mysterious as the tight, intricately plotted serial murders she is investigating with such rigour. Perhaps slightly prettier than Lund but less attractive, what unites these two disparate characters is obsession: the unstoppable focus of the hunter.

As Saga’s Danish counterpoint partner Martin Rhode, Kim Bodnia is wonderfully grungy and gruff, comfortingly thick set and amusingly bewildered by the paradox of Saga’s incisively analytical reading of their serial killer prey’s motivation which owes nothing to intuition or emotional insight. He mischievously teases her instinctive conformity to rules and procedure with unorthodox, dubiously legal short cuts in their pursuit of the killer.

Superbly shot, impeccably edited, there is consummate technical expertise up there on the screen with a brooding, menacing atmosphere you could cut with a knife and the unlikely creation of an iconic star in the beautiful Øresund, the longest road and rail bridge in Europe stretching 5 miles between Copenhagen and Malmö. The Øresund offers a powerful visual metaphor for both the physical link and cultural distance between two very different Scandinavian countries: a difference perfectly mirrored in the characters of Saga and Martin. This is a drama superbly conceived and beautifully realised.

I sure as hell hope BBC4 has something lined up to replace The Bridge in a couple of weeks’ time as it’s going to leave a painful void in Saturday night’s viewing.

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