Number 1000!!! – Friday, October 28th - Larry H. publishes his one thousandth movie review 1997-2022
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
Released:  December 9, 2011
The film is an adaptation from a John le Carre novel about the investigation by retired British agent George Smiley to determine the identity of a Russian mole during the Cold War.  The codes names of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy are used for ease in communication among the key spies involved in this extremely complicated plot that jumps from scene to scene and country to country through a series of flashbacks.
One could benefit from a program to keep up with all the players.  Here is a short list of the spies and suspects (not real names): Percy Alleline, Bill Haydon, Roy Bland, Tony Esterhase, Jim Prideaux, and Control who is the head of the Circus.  Oh yeah, “Circus” is the upper echelon also known as M16 (Secret Intelligence Service) which was tasked to collect foreign intelligence.  During the Cold War of the 1950’s and 1960’s, these guys were some genuine spooks and they are accurately portrayed in this movie as pretty skilled spies.  The lead is superbly played by Gary Oldham (George Smiley) who methodically gathers clues and tightens the net in his quest to find the Russian mole.
This movie is not for everyone, but those of you who love a good whodunit and are willing to be patient and follow small clues and tidbits in a very confusing and convoluted story, then this movie is for you.  I got a little confused, but please don’t tell anyone as I’m supposed to be a professional moviegoer.  Oops.
Major footnote and mild newsflash:  I’ve made a terrible mistake by missing “Drive” which debuted in September starring Ryan Gosling.  The trailers were seemingly dull to me and I didn’t bother seeing this movie until I obtained a DVD via the Houston Film Critics Society.  “Drive” is an absolutely fantastic movie and should be on your must-see list.  I will be sorely disappointed if Gosling is not nominated for Best Actor.  Let me put it in plain terms, Gosling plays a two-bit Hollywood stuntman who moonlights as a wheelman and gets involved in a heist that goes deadly wrong and the bad guys come after him.
Ok, here’s the plain part:  Gosling’s character is so stoic and cool at the same time that he reminded me of a combo of a young Steve McQueen and Clint Eastwood.  Does that make him a god?  Just kidding because I’ve already told you people that I don’t blaspheme, but Ryan G. accomplished this feat without packing a pistol or showing his internationally known six pack.  And there are other outstanding performances by the great Carey Mulligan (see “Shame” also) and Albert Brooks and Ron Perlman as heavies.  Bryan Cranston as Shannon is memorable even though he gets slightly lost because there are so many great performances.  “Drive” is worthy of a nomination.  Rock ‘n Roll.
“Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy”  Grade 85.  Larry H
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