Years and Years [8/10]

Years and Years,” a kinetic yet character-rich drama from the mind of Russell T. Davies, rockets through its six episodes spanning a decade and a half into Britain’s future from the present day. We follow the Manchester Lyons family, two sons and two daughters, together with their grandmother, plus a constellation of brilliant bit players surrounding them, as the United Kingdom decays in a surreal but oh-so-recognizable extension of the Brexit era. From the first minute, there is no let up; the tightly directed script sprints so fast that viewer attention cannot divert. Each of the core family characters plays a key role, and the acting is superb, especially from Russell Tovey (as Daniel Lyons), Ruth Madeley (sister Rosie), Rory Kinnear (brother Stephen), and Emma Thompson (rampaging across the screen as populist politician Vivienne Rook). The plot plunges England and indeed the world into turmoil, refugees flood borders, technological inventions spring up, the family loves and bickers … what a maelstrom. The cinematography is brilliant and the dialogue crackles. All up, an immersive character study of an absorbing family amidst chaos. Highly recommended.

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