Jesse Stone: Sea Change is the best entry in the TV movie series to date. Tom Selleck's first big breakthrough came when he was cast as the title character in CBS' Magnum P.I. The show followed the adventures of a private eye in Hawaii and would run for eight seasons; it also featured crossover episodes with series like Simon & Simon. While Magnum P.I. undeniably made Selleck a star, it also led to a big "what if?" in his career, when he had to pass on playing Indiana Jones in Raiders Of The Lost Ark for the show.
Tom Selleck still had a movie career of note, appearing in 1987's hit comedy Three Men And A Baby and its sequel, in addition to western Quigley Down Under. Television is where the actor has primarily made his home throughout his career, including a recurring role on Friends, TV movies Last Stand At Saber River and Crossfire Trail and a main role on CBS' long-running cop series Blue Bloods.
One of Tom Selleck's most acclaimed performances came from his starring role in the Jesse Stone TV movies. The character comes from a series of detective novels by late author Robert B. Parker, with Stone being a former LAPD detective fired for a drinking problem following a painful divorce. The first Jesse Stone TV movie was Stone Cold, which aired in 2005, and found the character as the police chief of a New England town with a lot of secrets. The movie proved to be a ratings hit with CBS airing another seven movies between 2006 and 2012.
What makes Stone so interesting is that while he may be a good cop, he's also deeply troubled. The movies are dark, moody neo-noir tales, and Selleck is perfect for the world-weary detective. Arguably the best of series is fourth entry Jesse Stone: Sea Change, where to take his mind off drinking Jesse investigates a cold case involving a bank robbery. A subplot also finds him investigating a rape accusation by a young woman, with Sean Young's (Blade Runner) Sybil Martin being a potential witness.
The bank robbery cold case is a compelling mystery, but Jesse Stone: Sea Change underlines why these movies work so well. From the great performances of the supporting characters - including co-stars Viola Davis (The Suicide Squad) and William Devane - to Robert Harmon's direction, Sea Change is just as much about the mood as it is the story. Selleck is also typically great and fully inhabits the troubled detective.
The last Jesse Stone movie aired in 2015 on the Hallmark Channel, and there's another one in development. Pretty much every entry in the franchise has been solid, with Jesse Stone: Sea Change being one of the best. Fans of the detective genre or Tom Selleck should check them out.