Review: Page Eight

Review: Page Eight

Masterpiece Theater is usually a little confusing and slightly artsy. But Page Eight, the newest installment of the miniseries show, is highly complex and extremely pretentious.

Johnny Worricker (Bill Nighy) is a gloomy government agent and, when his best friend and fellow spy, Benedict Baron (Michael Gambon, who played Albus Dumbledore), discovers a scandalous secret, things get complicated.

The acting is British, which usually means dry humor and clever conversation, but Page Eight took it to the extreme. Worricker’s attractive neighbor, Nancy Pierpan (Rachel Weisz), is the only character who isn’t loaded down with depression and guilt, and only her dialogue is slightly coherent and believable. It was unbearable to watch so many unhappy people talk about their lives in vague little snippets.

Watch Page Eight Preview on PBS. See more from MASTERPIECE.

As the case gets more involved, and more characters get added to the mix, the show becomes agonizingly convoluted. British Prime Minister Alec Beasley (Ralph Fiennes, who played Lord Voldemort) is the all-knowing villain, which isn’t surprising, but that’s about the only thing the audience can decipher from the 90 minutes.

Unless you enjoy complete confusion and elitism, stay away from Page Eight. I will, however, recommend the other Masterpiece Theater minishows, on Public Broadcasting System (PBS) Sundays at 8 p.m.