Many British intelligence officers guessed that a “mole” working for the USSR had long been entrenched in its leadership. But those who dared to declare this openly, for some reason, found themselves in retirement. The rest preferred to keep quiet. But the confirmation of the existence of the Russian agent came from a completely unexpected side. A covert investigation begins, led by retired George Smiley. And no one, including the top intelligence officials, should have guessed that the mole has been hunted again.
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Each country that participated in the Cold War has its own stories of how they tried to prevent a third world war, so England decided in the new century to once again film the novel by John Le CarrÃ© “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy”, an autobiographical novel by a former British intelligence agent …
70s of the XX century, the height of the Cold War, retired MI6 agent George Smiley is trying to find a rat at the top of British intelligence. The problems become even greater when it turns out that Smiley himself may be a mole …
The $ 30 million budget was funded by StudioCanal and directed by Thomas Alfredson, The Spy being his first English-language work.
Alfredson did not deviate far from the style that was remembered for his previous project “Let Me In”. Monotony, unhurriedness, long panoramic and portrait shots are his signature style. Very confidently, imperiously and clearly, he leads the viewer into the world of espionage and political games, introduces the characters and, if necessary, easily deals with them.
The original screenplay was written by Peter Morgan, later rewritten by Peter Strohan and Bridget O’Connor. They cut the book as much as possible, although as the preview showed, it was safe to cut more. The plot turned out to be scattered throughout the two-hour timekeeping and the viewer often becomes simply bored, since the action is almost absent, being replaced by long shots or dialogues of the characters.
Moreover, the author of the book liked this adaptation in spirit, although he admitted that the scriptwriters cut down decently:
“You turned a cow into a bouillon cube” (c)
Hoyte Van Hoytema shot the film in a spectacular and high-quality manner. The beauty of cities, in which there are characters in the picture, faces and images of heroes – all this is conveyed to them at the highest professional level.
The main maneuver of the creators of the picture is the ideal main composition of the picture. I will not go into details of what they did wrong, but those who spend the most time in the frame play at the highest level.
Gary Oldman has created an impressive image that is able to amaze the viewer, even with a slight change in the actor’s facial expressions.
Benedict Cumberbatch very successfully departed from the image of Sherlock Holmes and created a character completely different from him.
Tom Hardy is effective and powerful, although his line suffers most from the fact that a lot of it could be removed.
Mark Strong, with his small role, brought his energy to the picture and gave it even more power.
John Hurt and Toby Jones played their episodes brightly and powerfully.
Small roles were given to Svetlana Khodchenkova and Konstantin Khabensky, and if the first was, as always, herself, then the second received too little time to talk about some kind of game.
Alberto Iglesias, who usually works with Pedro Almodovar, composed and played crystal clear music that complements the visual series like a puzzle.
In the end, the authors were able to create an inexpensive but promising picture, which, unfortunately, does not quite cope with its duties. She is gifted with excellent acting, an amazing soundtrack, beautiful camera work, but the script is idle, because the intrigue captures the viewer with episodes, and the rest of the time he has to be bored. The picture is undoubtedly worthy of one viewing, but one thing is clear that not all viewers will be able to sit out a two-hour film in which the action scenes are inserted too chaotically, and their number is minimal.
Codec: HEVC / H.265 (77.2 Mb/s)
Resolution: Native 4K (2160p)
HDR: Dolby Vision, HDR10
Original aspect ratio: 2.39:1
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (48kHz, 24-bit)
English: Dolby Digital 5.1
English: Dolby Digital 2.0
German: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 (48kHz, 24-bit)
English SDH, German.