Tom Selleck and a great team of actors and crew bring Robert B. Parker's Jesse Stone to life. "Stone Cold" introduces us to Jesse, a cop laid off in L.A. for drinking on the job and getting a second chance as the police chief of the sleepy village of Paradise, Massachusetts. Of course, it's not sleepy for long, and Jesse finds himself investigating a spree of murders and a gang-rape at the high school.
Robert B. Parker's work is brilliant. He is clearly the heir to Chandler, Hammett and MacDonald and reigns as the king of mystery in America. Jesse Stone is one of his more dynamic characters, and Selleck captures Jesse perfectly. He is the calm in the midst of the storm, a man who's not always right but is always trying to do the right thing. The villains in this movie, the serial-killer couple the Lincolns, are played with smarmy menace by Reg Rogers and Jane Adams. You need to hate the villains as much as you love your hero, and these two don't disappoint. It's great to watch Jesse encircle them, much like Columbo, and prepare to take them down.
Some parts of this movie feel rushed, and aspects of the novel are omitted, but that's to be expected in a TV adaptation. Parker's work has not been treated well by TV in the past, but with a top-notch movie like "Stone Cold," Jesse Stone came to TV with a great start.