“House M.D.: Broken (#6.1)” (2009)

“House M.D.: Broken (#6.1)” (2009)



over the TV’s nest

This is a pleasant detour from the linear, well known, and unchangeable path of the series and its main character. This is the problem with series that develop the same characters throughout a huge number of episodes: they can’t really “develop” characters, they have to give us the impression that characters are changing, that characters have an arc of evolution, but they can’t take the fundamental characteristics that made the audiences go with the show in the first place. So, this guy, House, will always have to be brilliant, bitter, unfriendly, yet likable and with a “good heart”. I mean, how many possibilities do you have with this? They found a formula, like the majority of the shows, something like: each episode features a rare medical case, House and his team have to find the solution, while working out their personal and collective lives. After 4 and a half seasons, they thought it would be enough, so they start to put the medical mysteries on House himself, eventually leading to the breakdown where we find him at the beginning of season 6. So, this (double) episode is like opening the window and letting fresh air in. We have House, and we actually have some (very) basic character development. In order to do that, we are fully taken away from the usual environment of the previous seasons. So, this is like a TV film centered around a character we already know. we can watch this one with a degree of autonomy that no other episode has. This episode (almost) stands alone. I suppose it is supposed to, and that’s why they’ve put Franka Potente, a real cinema actress, in a major role, to make it believable, as an autonomous piece. They conceive a few ordinary but watchable nut cases, and so they use the formula of “cuckoo’s nest”.

For this double episode alone, they raised the production values, and gave a special care for photography and lighting, and in some points framing. This confirms my idea. But the thing is, Katie Jacobs is not a real filmmaker, she frames and edits everything with the mundane feel of TV shows, which work as production lines, not like real art. This “film” is worthless as a film, despite the efforts. And even though Hugh Laurie is believable and has the sympathy of the audience, his character is a TV character, born for TV. Transposing House to cinema is as goofy as a genius drug addict doctor been placed in an insane institution.

My opinion: 3/5

This comment on IMDb


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