Five Days Review

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Gwyneth Hughes’ solid crime thriller


Trailed as one of the BBC’s flagship dramas for 2007, Gwyneth Hughes’ solid crime thriller revolves around the disappearance of young mum Leanne (Christine Tremarco) and her two children, following the case across five episodes, each devoted to one day. It’s a neat device, if derivative of 24, and Hughes has created an instantly compelling drama. Inevitably the suspense wanes as the facts gradually emerge, yet Hughes’ supporting characters — including Penelope Wilton’s anxious mother and Hugh Bonneville’s jaded detective — are sensitively drawn, eliciting real empathy. Indeed, Five Days is not so much pure thriller as a superior examination of the emotional impact of such a crisis. It’s just a shame that the final episode’s dissatisfying revelation seems rushed and overly contrived.