To celebrate the release of the second season of Banshee on Blu-ray and DVD on 26th January 2015, we take a look at the films and TV shows that have put hidden identities at the heart of their double-minded characters and award-winning storylines. The fascination with a double life permeates both the big screen and the small, with some of the most thrilling on-screen narratives examining the question of what it’s like to live a life that no one knows you’re actually living.
Returning for a new and exciting second season, Banshee returns with more twists and turns than ever before. The 2013 Primetime Emmy© Award winning TV series for Outstanding Special Effects follows the life of Lucas Hood (Anthony Starr), an ex-convict turned pseudo-sheriff of the rural Amish town, Banshee. Banshee tells the intense story of a man living a secret life whilst remaining haunted by his past. Having escaped detection from FBI agent Jim Racine (Zeljko Ivanek), Hood must deal with the unwelcome appearance of a surprise visitor: the reprobate son of the real (and dead) Lucas Hood. In his official capacity as sheriff, his hands are fuller than ever after murder of a Kinaho tribe girl and Hood must deal with double the trouble in order to remain incognito.
“Look, up in the sky, it’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s Superman!”
Based on the beloved DC Comics character Superman, the charming superhero returned to the big screens in 2006, almost 20 years after the last live action film Superman IV: The Quest for Peace was released in 1987. Directed by Bryan Singer, the Oscar© nominated Superman Returns starred Brandon Routh (Arrow, The Batman) as Superman and his alter ego Clark Kent, Kate Bosworth (21, Remember the Titans) as his love interest Lois Lane, and Kevin Spacey (House of Cards, American Beauty) as his nemesis Lex Luthor. When Clark Kent isn’t saving the world as Superman, he is the strangely average journalist at the Daily Planet. However, determined to use his supernatural abilities for the benefit of humanity, Kent quickly and inconspicuously transforms into the Man of Steel himself, as soon as trouble begins to unfold.
The Golden Globe© winning AMC crime drama TV series has amassed a huge international following, with over 10.3 million people watching the intense final episode in the UK alone. By day Walter White (Bryan Cranston) is a struggling high school chemistry teacher who discovers that he is living with stage III inoperable lung cancer. With only two years to live, White turns to a life of crime and begins cooking and distributing crystallized methamphetamine with hopes to create a stable financial future for his family. His life of crime, however, proves far more dangerous than anticipated and his life dangles on a precipice for the entire run of the series. White teaches the minds of the young while slowly forfeiting himself to his alter ego, Heisenberg, in order to survive the drug dealing world.
Some people have secrets and some people have deep dark secrets. In the Golden Globe© winning Showtime series Dexter, viewers learn that there is a silver lining to even the darkest of secrets. The series stars Golden Globe© winning Michael C. Hall as protagonist Dexter Morgan. Dexter works as a blood spatter pattern analyst for the Miami Metro Police Department during the day, but has an entirely different occupation when he puts his police badge away. After witnessing the brutal murder of his mother and being orphaned at the age of three, Dexter developed a peculiar interest in blood and murder. To satisfy this twisted flaw in his personality and use it for the betterment of mankind, his adopted father Harry Morgan (James Remar) taught him to kill heinous criminals such as child molesters, rapists and serial killers who have escaped prosecution and live free from punishment. Some secrets can never be revealed, and in Dexter’s case his hidden identity needs to remain buried to keep his freedom alive and his job safe.
21 JUMP STREET
Based on the 1987 political crime drama TV series of the same name, 21 Jump Street is the hilarious action-packed comedy about a pair of deadbeat cops who are sent to a local high school on a drug-busting mission. The two must disguise themselves as high school students in order to blend in and gain the trust of the teenage drug dealer. Starring Jonah Hill as Schmidt and Channing Tatum as Jenko, the pair are sent into a high school to bust the unknown dealer of a new synthetic drug called HFS (Holy F**king S**t). Captain Dickson (Ice Cube) gives the detectives two simple rules: do not get expelled from school and do not have sexual relations with students or teachers. This film hilariously shows all the ways that things can go wrong when leading a double life.
Adapted from the world-famous musical and French historical novel of the same name, Les Misérables is the heart-wrenching story of war, revolution and love. The film features the highly acclaimed talents of Anne Hathaway, Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, Helena Bonham Carter and Amanda Seyfried. In the beginning of the film Jean Valjean (Jackman) is known as prisoner 24601, who after being released from his incarceration experiences a very hard time rejoining society. He breaks his parole by stealing from a Bishop, who does not convict him. Instead, the Bishop asks Valjean to promise him to start a new life. Eight years later, Valjean is a factory owner and mayor of Montreuli, Pas-de-Calais—an apparent flip from his thieving past. His cover, however, is in danger of being uncovered by the suspicious Captain Javert (Crowe).
CATCH ME IF YOU CAN
Catch Me If You Can hit the big screen in 2002 and was directed by the critically acclaimed Stephen Spielberg. The story follows a teenager by the name of Frank Abagnale Jr. played by Oscar© nominated actor Leonardo DiCaprio. The film tells the true story of the real-life former check-forger, fraudster and imposter. Abagnale was able to successfully perform these criminal acts by posing as a Pan Am pilot, a doctor and a legal prosecutor. Specialising in check fraud, Abagnale is discovered by Carl Hanratty who is played by the Oscar© winning actor Tom Hanks. The film continues with Hanratty chasing Abagnale all around the world in an attempt to capture and imprison the young trickster. Abagnale became so experienced that the FBI eventually turned to him to help in catching other check forgers.
BANSHEE: THE COMPLETE SECOND SEASON is out on DVD and Blu-ray from 26th January 2015, courtesy of HBO Home Entertainment and is available to own and watch instantly via blinkbox now.