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Person of Interest 

An ex-assassin and a wealthy programmer save lives via a surveillance AI that sends them the identities of civilians involved in impending crimes. However, the details of the crimes--including the civilians' roles--are left a mystery.

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Top Rated TV #242 | Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 8 wins & 18 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

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Storyline

A billionaire software-genius named Harold Finch creates a Machine for the government that is designed to detect acts of terror before they can happen, by monitoring the entire world through every cell-phone, email and surveillance camera. Finch discovered that the machine sees everything, potential terrorist acts and violent crimes that involve ordinary people. When the government considered violent crimes between normal people "irrelevant", Finch built a back door into the system that gives him the social security number of a person involved in a future violent crime so he could act. Partnered with John Reese, an ex-CIA agent, the two work in secret to prevent violent crimes before they can happen. Eventually their activities lead to being hunted by the New York Police Department, CIA Agents in pursuit of Reese who was listed as dead, a computer hacker named Root who wants access to the Machine, and government officials who want to keep all knowledge of the Machine a complete secret. Written by Jones

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

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You're Being Watched See more »


Certificate:

TV-14 | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

22 September 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

P.O.I  »

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1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Showrunner Jonathan Nolan stated that he knew Ramin Djawadi, the composer of the show, ever since he worked with him on his brother's Batman Begins, where Ramin did additional music for Hans Zimmer. Nolan described Ramin as "unbelievably talented", and he said that sometimes when they decided to use a song in the show, Ramin would come with an original piece he composed and Jonah had to say "Sorry, Ramin's s**t wins again!". Later Jonathan chose Ramin Djawadi as the composer of his HBO project, Westworld. See more »

Goofs

When younger Finch goes to university he is conspicuously taller than the Finch we see in all other episodes. See more »

Quotes

[Opening narration, Season 5]
Harold Finch: You are being watched. The government has a secret system...
Harold Finch: [voice warping] secret system
John Greer: A system you asked for to keep y-y-you sssafe.
[visuals glitch POVs between that of Samaritan and of the Machine]
Harold Finch: A Machine that spies on you every hour of every day.
John Greer: You've granted it the power to see everything, to index, order, and control the lives of ordinary people.
Harold Finch: The government considers these people irrelevant. We don't.
John Greer: But to it, you are *all* irrelevant. Victim or ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Cinema Snob: Dear Santa (2016) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
It's a show that honestly wants to be good...and succeeds at it
27 September 2011 | by See all my reviews

So I don't have too many TV shows that I would say that I'm hooked on. I had LOST while it was on the air, and that was enough for me. Since that show ended, I've had a couple of shows that I've paid attention to, but none have ever really replicated the intensity and addictiveness of LOST. In fact, in those years, there have been shows that I have thought might have the "potential," but they all flopped and didn't get renewed. For this reason, I have a hard time when someone tells me a show is "the new LOST" or something to that effect.

The show that I'm writing about is not it.

Person of Interest is a new CBS crime drama that started airing last week. I didn't know much about it, but I saw that it had received some good reviews. I did some research and found it had some promise.

First off, it was created by two men named Jonathan Nolan and JJ Abrams. If you do not know who these men are, let me explain. JJ Abrams is the man behind LOST. That should be enough, but if you weren't a fan of that show (gasp!), then he also directed the recent Star Trek movie as well as this summer's Super 8. The other man is Jonathon Nolan. His brother is Christopher Nolan, who directed the last two Batman movies and is working on the third. Christopher directed them, but Jonathan Nolan wrote the screenplays. And he wrote the screenplay for Person of Interest.

Secondly, I noticed the cast. As I mentioned, one of the principal characters is played by Michael Emerson. I am of the opinion that Michael Emerson is one of the greatest actors on television. Benjamin Linus was such a complex, mysterious character and Emerson's acting really brought a lot to the show. The main character, however, is played by Jim Caviezel. I've liked this actor ever since he starred in 2002's The Count of Monte Cristo, but many people know him for playing Jesus in The Passion of the Christ. He's a phenomenal actor that is able to bring out the humanity in a character while at the same time portraying the raw nature of man. In other words, he can play a tough guy with a heart.

That being said, let's talk about the plot. The first thing that came to mind was "Minority Report." Both that movie and this television show are about preventing homicides before they happen. However, as the episode progressed, I thought nothing of that movie, as while the premise is not an original idea, here it is presented in a way that does not seek to imitate. Whereas "Minority Report" was about a futuristic "utopian" society in which crime is prevented through precognition, "Person of Interest" is more realistic and less science fiction. It takes place in present day New York City, a city still living in paranoia after the attacks of 9/11. Without spoiling much of the pilot, the premise is based off the massive security and surveillance undertaken by the government, and what would happen if that system were able to identify potential murderers and murder victims before a situation occurred.

It's obviously inspired by several other films and television shows. However, it doesn't seem like it, and from the direction to the acting to the writing, it's clear that this is a show that wants to stand on its own. It's not trying to be the next LOST; it's trying to be a good show. And personally, I think it'll succeed. It has the action, it has the plot twists, it has the suspense, and all the other things we expect out of a show like this these days. But beyond that, it has a passion behind it—which is what I think drew so many people to LOST, as well as other shows like Firefly and Arrested Development—that this is something that the people behind it want to see succeed and to be good.


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