I missed the first hour as I was watching CSI Miami then I realised it was on but despite ringing someone (during the adverts) I knew was going to watch it and getting a résumé of what had gone on I could not get into it.
Okay, two things:
1) The show is being repeated all this week, in one hour chapters, each night on Film Four Weekly, between 8 and 9pm, starting tonight - Monday 9th Feb through to Friday 13th. This will be your last chance to catch the show for a while. It's not likely to be cut, but the timeslot is certainly iffy, as there is some controversial material, which seems at odds with the scheduled time slot on a pay satellite TV channel. (It would almost definitely get an 18 by the BBFC!)
2) I watched the entire 6.5 hours of this show, and I would like the opportunity to now offer my comments.
Firstly, this show will divide people: you'll either like it or hate it! However, you are unlikely to love it. Like many of you, the first hour was very tough going, and self-indulgent, but after watching the entire mini-series, I found it to be a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
I have not seen any show or film quite like this. It's not easy to categorise, because by the end of the entire saga, it could be labelled as a drama about the Holocaust; a quasi-religious drama; an AIDS story and/or a fantasy story. It's only once you have sat through the entire thing, that the story works, and begins to sift through your brain.
This was not simple, easy TV. It's dialogue-heavy, and there's not much of a plot, per se, and the narrative is quite complex. However, if you simply just sit down and watch it, then I would like to hope that for the more intelligent and discerning viewers out there, that the show will work for you.
If you're looking for something nice, easy and fluffy to watch, forget about it, as this is not for you!
Once you get through the story, and work out who's who, and how everyone is related, the show did work - at least for me. There are elements of "The Last Temptation Of Christ", "Schindler's List" and "Philadelphia" in it. I won't elaborate any further, only because I don't want to ruin it for those of you still hoping to watch it.
However, please give it a go. This is definitely the most unusal, non-linear story I've seen in a long, long time, and made "Lord Of The Rings" seem like "Play School" to follow. Like I said, if you want something different and daring, this is worthwhile. Just try not to think about things, whilst you watch it. Let the show take you through its chosen path, and accept things as it feels fit to tell you. Then, once it all ends, you can meditate on it, and that's when the beauty and wonder of the narrative will pay off.
I tried the first half on Saturday night and it just didn't offer enough to pull me back on Sunday night. I couldn't get into the characters, and there really wasn't anything of a story that had me hooked! I mean by the end of 3 hours on Saturday night nothing had really happened that gave you that "I have to see how this ends" feeling.
Unfortunately I didn't record part 2 last night so I can't comment on how it all fits together, but another 3 hours of it just didn't appeal.