Based on John le Carré’s 1974 spy novel of the same name, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy was released in 2011 to much acclaim, eventually earning three Academy Award nominations. Directed by Tomas Alfredson, the film weaves a tangled web of intrigue, deceit, dirty dealing, treachery, smoke and mirrors and a variety of other similar words and phrases we looked up in our thesaurus. In the end, it all adds up to a scintillating espionage thriller featuring an incredible cast of characters and performances.
During the height of the Cold War, a British Intelligence agent is sent to Hungary on a mission to obtain valuable information. The operation is blown and in the ensuing international incident, Control (the head of British Intelligence) and his right-hand man, George Smiley (Gary Oldman) are removed from power. Control dies shortly thereafter, but not before revealing his belief that a mole exists within the highest echelons of the organization, appropriately known as “the Circus”. When his hunch is corroborated by another agent, Smiley is brought out of retirement to investigate. Smiley is forced into what the back of the Blu-ray package refers to as “the ultimate international spy game where everyone’s motives are in question.” I’m certainly no expert on spy games, but having watched the film I have to admit that it did seem pretty ultimate.
You can find the rest of my review on Cinema Sentries