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DVD Review

DVD cover

The Dark Side of the Sun


Starring: Peter Egan, Patrick Mower, Emily Richard, Betty Arvaniti, Christopher Scoular and Michael Sheard
Distributor: Eureka Entertainment
RRP: £29.95
Certificate: 15
Release Date: 14 September 2015

Michael J. Bird had a very successful run of television dramas in the '70s and '80s set in the Greek Mediterranean, including The Lotus Eaters, Who Pays the Ferryman? and the Aphrodite Inheritance. As the dramas progressed they transformed from a story about spies to stories which came to include more elements of the supernatural, the culmination of which was the spooky The Dark Side of the Sun (1983).

The story takes place off the island of Rhodes where photo journalist Don Tierney (Patrick Mower) has reluctantly taken a job detailing the changing seasons of the island, a far cry from the usual award winning war work he was used to. Arriving on the Island he witnesses a number of unusual events which convince him that something is going on and with his journalistic instincts he pursues his story only to end up dead.

Distraught at the loss of her husband Anne Tierney (Emily Richard) arrives on the Island determined to find out the truth. The truth is stranger than she thinks, not including the fact that she seems to be haunted by the ghost of her dead husband.

The story is a child of its time and the pace of the show is quite slow, but this works in the stories favour as it is slowly revealed that the main mystery revolves around the Knights Templar castle of Hagios Therodoros, where an influential group of people have gathered, led by the charismatic Raoul Lavalliere (Peter Egan).

The show is presented over a two disc DVD set with an aspect ratio of 4:3 and consists of six episodes with approximately forty minutes running time each. The set contains no extras. The picture has suffered over time and looks to have been recorded on video tape rather than film.

Bird weaves a good ‘whodunnit’ in the same vein as the Dan Brown books, giving a similar mix of the ordinary and the supernatural. Whilst a lot of the threads of the story are resolved there is a certain sense that other have been left hanging, possibly for a sequel that never was.


Charles Packer

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