It’s time to head back to Paradise Massachusetts (read as Nova Scotia) again.
Picking up shortly after the last film ended, Robert B Parker’s creation Jesse Stone (Tom Selleck) is still on the outs with the town council, and suspended from his position as Chief.
In fact, the force is down to two members for the whole county, Suitcase Simpson (Kohl Sudduth) and Rose Gammon (Kathy Baker).
And they are in over their head.
In the interim, Captain Healy (Stephen McHattie) of the State Troopers approaches Jesse about serving as a temporary consultant in helping solve a murder, that quickly becomes a trio of seemingly unrelated killings.
In Paradise, Hasty Hathway (Saul Rubinek), now out of prison reveals that the council is going to clean house in terms of the police department, firing everyone, especially if they can’t resolve a series of convenience store robberies that has seen the clerks being beaten, and left with life-threatening injuries.
And the investigation of the triple murders, leads Jesse to chat once again with crime boss Gino Fish (William Sadler) who had ’employed’ the first victim.
The film ends with the department’s future, as well as Stone’s much needed job hanging in the balance. It also sees him trying to more personally connect to Reggie the dog, after being encouraged to do by his psychiatrist, Doctor Dix (William Devane).And possibly the last appearance of Jenn’s voice on his phone? In a rough moment, Jesse tears the phone out of the wall, which causes him to finally replace it with a cell phone, to which he selectively hands out the number.
Michael Brandman and Selleck return as the writers of this installment. This time, like the previous installment, they don’t use a Jesse Stone novel as a leaping off point. In spite of that, both of them are so familiar with the characters, the environment created for the film series, and the faces and dialogue that I get wrapped right up in it.
I love the sense of continuity the series has established by making sure that all the same actors come back time and time again, Emily Bishop (Mae Whitman) last seen in Death In Paradise comes back, as well as Hasty, the town council, the exception being the recasting of Cissy Hathaway previously played by Stephanie March in Night Passage, this time out she is portrayed by Krista Allen. We also get to see more of Sister Mary John (Kerri Smith), one of the most attractive nuns I have ever seen! Obviously Jesse feels the same, cause they finally go out for dinner.
All in all though the familiar faces, locations (I really do love the house they use for exteriors for Stone’s house) and stories, continue to make this an entertaining and engaging series of mystery films.
Sadly, even though Selleck has said he’s not done with the character yet, there are only two left in the film series.