Posted: 11/15/2009



by Del Harvey

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Point of impact — Friday afternoon on England’s busy A12 highway. Six cars collide in a terrible spectacle leaving two dead. Detective Inspector John Tolin (Douglas Henshall, Primeval) is called in to clean up, and quiet the cries of racism coming from the family of one of the victims. But a methodical investigation only scratches the surface of the ten strangers involved, and the surprising and touching ways they are transformed after the accident. Senior Investigating Officer Ann Stallwood (Kate Ashfield, Poirot), herself entangled with Tolin, joins the inquiry as allegations of corporate crime, infidelity, shameful secrets and murder slowly rise from the wreckage. Written by Anthony Horowitz (Foyle’s War) and Michael A. Walker, Collision investigates human nature, fate and the intriguing ways the truths of our lives are revealed.

Six cars collide on a superhighway outside London, leaving death, shattered lives, and profound mysteries. Why did some live and others die? Why did one driver disappear before rescuers got to him? And how will survivors, relatives, and others cope with a wrenching event that has unexpectedly far-reaching consequences?

Estranged lovers John Tolin and Ann Stallwood are the police officers called in to make sense of the mayhem, which unfolds as follows:

Sidney Norris, a piano teacher, inexplicably swerves, causing executive secretary Karen Donnelly to crash into him. Danny Rampton, an army vet driving a furniture van, skids into the two cars, leaving the ground and vaulting into the oncoming lanes. Young lovers Gareth Clay and Alice Jackson collide with the van while being pursued by police for speeding. Then a chauffeur-driven car carrying rich developer Richard Reeves plows into the first two cars, followed by store clerk Brian Edwards driving his mother-in-law, Joyce Thompson, who is grabbing at the wheel.

Sidney and Alice are dead at the scene, Joyce is in a coma, Danny is missing, and others are injured, including Richard, who falls in love while he is being treated. Meanwhile, Karen is in the hospital and desperately needs documents stolen from work that she left in her car — papers that put her in more danger than the accident itself.

Premiering on PBS Masterpiece Contemporary Sunday, November 15. Check local listings for showtimes.

Del Harvey is the founder of Film Monthly, a film teacher, a writer and a film critic in Chicago.

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