🇸🇪 🇩🇰 THE LAWYER 🇩🇰 🇸🇪
(By Gina Meardon)
The Lawyer aka Advokaten (2018-) is a Swedish-French-Finnish produced 2 seasons (18 x 45 min episodes) crime, mystery, drama thriller. Spoken language Danish and Swedish. Subtitled. On ALL4, Walter Presents, Channel 4, UK, SBS Australia, PBS Masterpiece USA. Available to buy on Prime Video.
Creator: Jens Lapidus
Writers: Jens Lapidus, Karin Gidfors and others
Directors: Geir Henning Hopland, Pontus Klänge and others
Cinematographers: Jean-Noël Mustonen, Johan Helmer & Haute Gunnari
Frank Nordling is a young, promising and gifted defence lawyer. However when Frank learns the truth behind his parents murder his whole world unravels. As children, he and his sister Sara saw their parents killed by a car bomb. Frank discovers they were murdered by one of Copenhagen’s criminal gangleaders, Thomas Waldman, who also happens to be his new firm’s biggest client.
Frank wants revenge and decides to gain Waldman’s trust in order to become his personal lawyer, but does he realise the dangers that lie ahead, not just for him but for those he loves?
Alexander Karim as Frank Nordling
Malin Buska as Sara Khalil
Thomas Bo Larsen as Thomas Waldman
Nicolaj Kopernikus as Svend-Erik Wisén
Johannes Lassen as Markos
Sara Hjort Ditlevsen as Therese Waldman
Liv Mjönes as Patricia
Henning Valin Jakobsen as Bogdan Nikolitch
Shebly Niarvarani as Said Khalil
Filmed on location in Stockholm, Malmö, Copenhagen and Helsinki
You know you are in for a treat when you have a cast of this calibre; Alexander Karim (Zero Dark Thirty, Real Humans, Johan Falk) Thomas Bo Larsen (Another Round, The Hunt, Follow The Money), Liv Mjönes (Stockholm Requiem, Kiss Me), Johannes Lassen (classical/contemporary stage actor also known for Countdown Copenhagen, Grow) and Nicolaj Kopernikus (The Killing).
Add to that mix the skilled pen of creator and crime writer Jens Lapidus, a real-life defence lawyer in Sweden, and you can’t go wrong. This is a stylish crime drama, make no mistake, there is no ‘slow-burn’ here. From the shocking opening scenes Lapidus pulls no punches (quite literally as it happens), even before the opening credits roll you will be putting down those phones.
The characterisation of the main protagonists is layered and interesting. As with real-life even bad guys have feelings and good guys make mistakes. Frank is handsome, charming but cocky and at times arrogant. He has his life (and his lover) just the way he wants. He has not seen his sister Sara for 6 months, because her life is far more complicated than his and she is that constant reminder of what he is trying to forget, the murder of their parents. He still suffers from tinnitus brought on by the explosion, his coping mechanism is boxing and he takes the punches to block the memories.
His sister Sara is a mess. She is a cop, battling an addiction, with a failed marriage and a young son. She refuses to give up finding out what really happened and why. Sara most certainly has issues and is at times not that likeable, however you can certainly understand why she is this way. She is the thorn in Frank’s side and when her persistence eventually leads to a breakthrough he realises they need to do this together.
Thomas Bo Larsen as the villain Thomas Waldman is exceptional. If Davor Mimica’s father had still been alive in Before We Die he would have been played by Thomas Bo Larsen. Waldman is frightening, cold, brutal and violent (and that is just with his ex-partner!) However he is also incredibly smart and shrewd, he keeps his circle tight and demands utmost loyalty – and he gets it. Those close to him have been his friends for years, including his trusted lawyer Svend-Erik who has taken Frank under his wing and sees enormous potential in him. If Thomas has a weakness it is his daughter Therese, the ‘apple of his eye’.
Therese Waldman is young, beautiful, spoiled and struggling with her mental health, a secret kept by her family and Waldman’s loyal footsoldier Markos, who will do anything for his boss, no matter how dirty, but who is obviously in love with Therese and protective of her. She is also trusting and naive and a pivotal character as the story unfolds.
Lapidus weaves high-octane action, violence and tragedy around a story wrapped in legal drama. In the late 90s there was a film called ‘What Rats Won’t Do’ (the rats in question being lawyers). When the stakes are at their highest a good lawyer can make all the difference, but those lawyers have plenty to lose as well and they are just as ruthless as their clients.
As this story unfolds over 2 seasons there are that many twists and turns along the way that you are never quite sure how it will end. You may even, just maybe, have sympathy for Waldman! Smart lawyer Frank fails to see that actions can have (disastrous) consequences.
As ever at the centre of every good story is love and family, and what you would do to protect both from those intent on causing harm, that applies as much for Waldman as it does to Frank and Sara. By the end of Season 2 the stakes had been raised so high, every episode increasing the tension that I certainly could not guess the final outcome and I am definitely not going to say anymore! Not even under oath.
The Lawyer Official Trailer Season 2 English subtitles WITH SPOILERS So don’t watch if not seen Season 1!!
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