“In stretching beyond its genre’s reliance on titillating gore, this was more brave – and more disarming – than other programmes in the true crime stable”

The Fall: Skydive Murder Plot

The Fall: Skydive Murder Plot, Channel 4

“The Fall: Skydive Murder Plot can draw on a powerful combination of Victoria Cilliers’ unbelievable good luck in surviving, Emile’s Wile E Coyote-esque approach to uxoricide, and the difficult, dark challenges the justice system faces when a coercive controller is a defendant. The compelling three-part documentary almost makes itself, if its makers can only get out of the way of the tale and tell it. But The Fall’s producers opt for a tricksy deconstruction of the true-crime medium that the story barely survives.”
Jack Seale, The Guardian

“This stylised, rather clever approach risks being a distraction, yet by episode one’s last shot, of Cilliers herself arriving on set to explain first hand the whole shebang, you couldn’t help but lean forward. Game on. The story becomes as much about her as her husband.”
James Jackson, The Times

“Watching actors being briefed by a director then walking straight on set to play a scene could have come off as unnecessarily tricksy, but it worked brilliantly. Yet, as fascinating as the bones of the story, broken or otherwise, undoubtedly were, I was left with the feeling that I’d got to the end of a jigsaw only to discover vital pieces missing.”
Keith Watson, The Telegraph

“The best dramatisations both grip and inform us. On the other hand, a documentary that relies solely on interviews with retired detectives and audio clips from police interviews can make the most shocking case seem workaday and mundane. Guy King, director of The Fall: Skydive Murder Plot, takes an innovative approach, with overlapping elements of both methods. The result is sometimes mannered, even bordering on arty — but never less than absorbing.”
Christopher Stevens, Daily Mail

“By now, we already know the Cilliers’s murder plot very well, but The Fall proves that intrigue is in ‘how’ a story is told as much as ‘what’ happened. In stretching beyond its genre’s reliance on titillating gore, this was more brave – and more disarming – than other programmes in the true crime stable.”
Emily Watkins, The i

Presumed Innocent, Apple TV+

“The performances are uniformly good and involving but never quite enough to overcome the slick soullessness that is the hallmark of every David E Kelley production. You never quite care. It never quite means anything.”
Lucy Mangan, The Guardian

“The source material runs to 500 pages, and now gets more room to breathe over eight episodes than it had in the 1990 film starring Harrison Ford. What the script does with this is to introduce a bunch of twists, misdirections and elongated therapy scenes, while much more time is spent with the Sabich family – including Rusty’s mainly loyal wife, Barbara (Ruth Negga), and their two teenagers. This is a mixed blessing as all drift through the story looking, for the most part, glacially untraumatised by the extent of Rusty’s serial betrayals.”
Jasper Rees, The Telegraph

“Kelley has said that he hopes Presumed Innocent will be ‘a callback to appointment television’ and that’s exactly what it is. Had this series been broadcast in the days when TV was limited to a handful of terrestrial channels, everyone would have been arguing about it at work the next day, picking holes in the case for the prosecution or the defence and speculating on the implications of the cliffhanger at the end of every episode. Unlike your standard issue by-the-numbers thriller, this is classy, captivating, grown-up entertainment.”
Neil Armstrong, The i