11
May, 2018
Safe is a Netflix original crime-thriller that is produced by Harlan Coben.

Disclaimer: I am a British reviewer, which could affect my judgment regarding this series. Also, please bear with me as I test out a new style of review.

As a series, Safe tells a non-linear tale of the disappearance of Jenny Delaney (Amy James-Kelly) and her father Tom’s (Michael C. Hall) search for her.

Plot/Script

Safe is set in England and follows the lives in a gated community after the disappearance of Jenny Delaney (Amy James Kelley), with the focus being on her father Tom (Michael C Hall).

While the plot with Tom is enjoyable, the stories for the side characters seem to meander to the point of overcomplicating the story. Many of the side plots are unnecessary, especially the one involving Zoe (Audrey Fleurot) and Neil Chahal (Joplin Sibtain).

The melodramatic nature of the series prevents any surprises from occurring as the script and plot stumble their way to the end.

Regarding scripting, the series is decent but lacks much depth beyond the surface. The overlying themes of family and secrets do run rife through the series, but are dealt with shallowly, almost to the point of being dismissive.

There are elements of the script that appear to be very Americanised which, given the setting, means that Safe doesn’t seem to gel into a cohesive structure.

Michael C Hall as Tom Delaney
Courtesy of Canal+/Netflix

Cast/Characterisation

The primarily British cast of the series manages to play their parts decently, although the lack of regionalisation for the accents takes away from my investment in the show. What was also slightly jarring was Michael C Halls accent as it fell into the stereotype category, faltering along the way with his posh accent.

Unfortunately, Michael C Halls character of Tom Delaney was not compelling enough to carry the series through. This is due to the lack of character depth for any of the characters.

Due to the nature of the series, a lot of the choices that are made by the cast appear to be over-dramatic.

On the other hand, some of the choices made by Marc Warren, Joplin Sibtain and Audrey Fleurot were inspired and added to the emotional impact of the series.

“There is some jarring notion to the production in which it just does not fit together, as much as it tries.”

Direction/Production Value

The direction for Safe is reminiscent of an ITV drama (not Broadchurch). The camera angles are uninspiring, and certain parts of the production feel cheap.

The use of English locations gives the series an authentic feel in veneer alone, as it is almost an Americanisation of English life.

There is some jarring notion to the production in which it just does not fit together, as much as it tries.

Safe is an over-complicated drama that could have done with being significantly shorter to maximise the emphasis. Instead, the series looks like a convoluted mess.

Number of times I looked at my watch: Countless

Recommendation: It’s not worth the watch.

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