Saturday, January 28, 2012

David Milch’s “Luck” hits the HBO trifecta

Ed here: I'm really looking forward to this.

David Milch’s “Luck” hits the HBO trifecta
Dustin Hoffman stars in the next great series from the creator of "Deadwood" and "John From Cincinnati"

Dennis Farina and Dustin Hoffman in "Luck" (Credit: HBO)

HBO has always been a good place for the literary-minded David Milch, the brainy former Yale lecturer. (Of course, the networks weren’t bad either; Milch created “NYPD Blue” while still working on “Hill Street Blues.”)

Milch conceived the richly detailed retooled western “Deadwood,” with characters spouting the prosaic and profane. If “Deadwood” ultimately didn’t have an ending, Milch’s next project, “John From Cincinnati,” almost didn’t have a beginning; the spiritual metaphor set in the underbelly of the surfing world lasted just a season.

With “Luck,” which begins Sunday on HBO, he’s got a better shot at longevity, while still creating groups of scruffy underdogs in seedy motels and grandiose, malevolent businessmen all buzzing around the same goal. In “Deadwood,” it was gold; in “John,” spiritual enlightenment. In “Luck,” it’s the hard-won riches and redemption captured through the majesty of horse racing.

Creating these various worlds means creating their own language and jargon, something Milch is especially adept at doing (or perhaps he’s so subsumed in the world of the track after his own years hanging out there, it’s second nature). All of these terms and vocal shorthand can be off-putting to audiences at first – especially when they’re mostly mumbled by the characters.

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1 comment:

matt newman said...

This is a review of Episode 2 from HBO's Luck, starring Dustin Hoffman,