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:: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

The big question surrounding Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy was whether this one of John le Carre’s novels could be successfully transformed to the big screen, or was this another one that would fail miserably (like some have in the past). However, boasting a stellar cast, Tinker Tailor Solider Spy is a brilliant film, although be warned this is one of those films you will want to watch more than once.

For those unfamiliar with the novel, Tinker Tailor Solider Spy is set in England during the Cold War and follows the events after British Spy, Ricki Tarr (Tom Hardy) warns ‘The Circus’ that there is a high-ranking Soviet mole betraying them. His fears are founded when Agent Jim Prideaux (Mark Strong) is compromised and shot. The man in charge of the Intelligence Agency, Oliver Lacon (Simon McBurney) then orders Peter Guillam (Benedict Cumberbatch) and the recently retired, George Smiley to investigate. Using clues left by Control (John Hurt) they are alerted to the fact that the mole is most likely one of Circus’ heads, either, Percy Alleline (Toby Jones), Bill Haydon (Colin Firth), Roy Bland (Ciaran Hinds) or Toby Esterhase (David Dencik), meaning their work must be in secret.

Dreictor, Tomas Alfredson should be thankful that the screenwriters adapted le Carre’s script so well. Alfredson’s visual styling brings great atmosphere to the film and he allows the story to flow without bogging down. In a lesser director’s hands the myriad of clues and characters could have become a muddy, confusing mess but here everything is spelt out (without making you feel stupid), although I would highly advise that you watch the film more than once so you don’t miss a single thing. But as far as spy espionage films go Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy works wonderfully well, is accessible and keeps you on the edge of your seat as you try to preempt who the mole is before it is revealed… and all I’ll say is boy-oh-boy will you be surprised. The fact the script also allows a few little black-comedy-one-liners come through also enhances the film.

With such an ensemble cast you know you are going to get quality and they don’t fail to deliver. Gary Oldman shows why he is should be considered one of the finest actors going around and he is well supported by actor-on-the-rise Benedict Cumberbatch, who backs up his fine performance in The Whistleblower with a role that will certainly make producers sit up and take notice. The other major impressive performance is the menacing performance of Toby Jones who shows those who saw him in Green Lantern that he isn’t all about cheese; he has a fine dramatic style that really stands out.

Tinker Tailor Solider Spy is a certain Oscar contender. An amazing film which can only be described as one of the finest espionage films ever made. This film keeps you guessing minute-by-minute and has your heart in your mouth at all times. An amazing cinematic masterpiece.