IMDb > "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy" (1979)
"Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy"
Quicklinks
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
Overview
main detailscombined detailsfull cast and crewcompany creditsepisode listepisodes castepisode ratings... by rating... by votes
Awards & Reviews
user reviewsexternal reviewsawardsuser ratingsmessage board
Plot & Quotes
plot summaryplot keywordsmemorable quotes
Did You Know?
triviagoofssoundtrack listingcrazy creditsalternate versionsmovie connectionsFAQ
Other Info
box office/businessrelease datesfilming locationstechnical specsliterature listingsNewsDesk
Promotional
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips

"Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy" (1979) More at IMDbPro »TV mini-series 1979-

Photos (See all 8 | slideshow)

Overview

User Rating:
8.6/10   4,251 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
MOVIEmeter: ?
Down 5% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Contact:
View company contact information for Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy on IMDbPro.
Seasons:
1
Release Date:
29 September 1980 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
In the bleak days of the Cold War, espionage veteran George Smiley is forced out of semi-retirement to uncover a Soviet agent within MI6's echelons. Full summary »
Awards:
Nominated for Primetime Emmy. Another 4 wins & 7 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
By-the-Book See more (81 total) »

Cast

 (Series Cast Summary - 17 of 18)

Alec Guinness ... George Smiley (7 episodes, 1979)

Michael Jayston ... Peter Guillam (7 episodes, 1979)
Anthony Bate ... Sir Oliver Lacon / ... (7 episodes, 1979)
George Sewell ... Mendel (7 episodes, 1979)
Bernard Hepton ... Toby Esterhase (5 episodes, 1979)

Ian Richardson ... Bill Haydon (5 episodes, 1979)
Hywel Bennett ... Ricki Tarr (5 episodes, 1979)
Terence Rigby ... Roy Bland (4 episodes, 1979)

Ian Bannen ... Jim Prideaux (4 episodes, 1979)
Michael Aldridge ... Percy Alleline (4 episodes, 1979)
Alec Sabin ... Fawn (4 episodes, 1979)

Alexander Knox ... Control (3 episodes, 1979)
Duncan Jones ... Roach (3 episodes, 1979)
Daniel Beecher ... Spikely (3 episodes, 1979)
John Wells ... Headmaster (2 episodes, 1979)
Frank Compton ... Bryant (2 episodes, 1979)
Frank Moorey ... Lauda Strickland (2 episodes, 1979)
(more)

Series Directed by
John Irvin (7 episodes, 1979)
 
Series Writing credits
Arthur Hopcraft (7 episodes, 1979)
John le Carré (7 episodes, 1979)

Series Produced by
Jonathan Powell .... producer (7 episodes, 1979)
 
Series Original Music by
Geoffrey Burgon (7 episodes, 1979)
 
Series Cinematography by
Tony Pierce-Roberts (7 episodes, 1979)
 
Series Film Editing by
Chris Wimble (4 episodes, 1979)
Clare Douglas (3 episodes, 1979)
 
Series Production Design by
Austen Spriggs (7 episodes, 1979)
 
Series Costume Design by
Joyce Mortlock (7 episodes, 1979)
 
Series Makeup Department
Elizabeth Rowell .... makeup artist (7 episodes, 1979)
 
Series Art Department
Douglas Burd .... graphic designer (7 episodes, 1979)
 
Series Sound Department
Mike Crozier .... dubbing editor (7 episodes, 1979)
Stan Morcom .... dubbing mixer (7 episodes, 1979)
Malcolm Webberley .... sound recordist (7 episodes, 1979)
Paul Ashton .... dubbing editor (3 episodes, 1979)
 
Series Camera and Electrical Department
Terry Manning .... chief electrician (1 episode, 1979)
Jim Monks .... chief grips (1 episode, 1979)
 
Series Editorial Department
Simon Holland .... assistant editor (1 episode, 1979)
 
Series Other crew
Frances Alcock .... assistant to director (7 episodes, 1979)
Peter Grimwade .... production assistant (7 episodes, 1979)
Jeremy Silberston .... assistant floor manager (7 episodes, 1979)
Tony Virgo .... production assistant (7 episodes, 1979)
Marcia Wheeler .... production unit manager (7 episodes, 1979)
Betty Willingale .... script editor (7 episodes, 1979)
Christabel Albery .... assistant floor manager (6 episodes, 1979)
 

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
290 min | UK:315 min (7 parts)
Country:
Language:
Color:
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
The code name for the British Intelligence secret service was "The Circus". John le Carré told the producer that the BBC offices matched his image of the Circus, and so parts of the Circus office interiors were filmed in the offices of the BBC.See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: In episode 6, Bill Hayden writes a cheque for his girlfriend and tears it out of the cheque-book. He then writes her name and address on a slip of paper. In the next shot he is shown ripping a (blank) cheque from the cheque-book and handing it to Smiley along with the slip of paper.See more »
Quotes:
[repeated line]
George Smiley:There are three of them, and Alleline.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Soundtrack:
Nunc DimittisSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
33 out of 36 people found the following review useful.
By-the-Book, 12 April 2005
Author: orlow from United States

There are few movies that follow the book. There is no end to the comment, "The book was so much better." There is good reason for that with some films. "The Lord of the Rings" would have been five movies if you went "by the book". Interesting and enjoyable as that might be for Tolkien fans, it was impossible for film makers. Yet, "Tailor, Tinker, Soldier, Spy" as a movie defies that axiom.

Having read the book and seen the movie more than "several times", they still remain interconnected and indistinguishable. Yes, the book contains more detail, but may details are covered by innuendo, scene or background detail in the movie. Alec Guinness becomes Smiley so completely that his acting gives real meaning to the idea of a "character actor", even down to wiping his glasses with his tie. (you have to read the book for that one.)That is not to say, that Guinness is a robot and the movie is stiff in the name of faithfulness to the book, just the opposite.

The movie dawns the viewer in, just as the book draws in the reader, as part of the process of discovery; unraveling the mystery. As in a true "who done it" (or as one commentator put "who is it"), the viewer has no more foreknowledge than Smiley. You are introduced to all the characters, all have reasons to be the defector, all have reasons to distrust an investigation to the past, yet only one is ferreted-out.

The ending is consistent with the logic of the book and film, but, you still don't expect it. It's anti-climactic yet believable. The film, like to book, leaves one wondering how this could happen. It's thought provoking given many of the suspects comments thought-out the book/film. Both inspire thought more than resolution. The story challenges the reader/viewer to think and think well about the reasons for and purpose of spying as a whole. (The film is more English in cultural orientation, but the concept is universal, as many Americans have learned as well.)

A wonderful book transformed into visual. Great acting through-out, and you really hate all the right people....

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (81 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy" (1979)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
A new item for the trivia section suicidea
Episode by episode synopsis Tietam
Who would play Smiley now? rleather
Its 'The Little Things' that keeps me watching it over and over.... Don-91
The only fault I found in TTSS suicidea
What model Alvis does Ian Bannen drive? ashfordr
See more »

Recommendations

If you enjoyed this title, our database also recommends:
- - - - -
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy Topaz The Fourth Protocol The Looking Glass War The Tamarind Seed
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
Show more recommendations

Related Links

Episode guide Full cast and crew Company credits
External reviews News articles IMDb TV section
IMDb Drama section IMDb UK section

You may report errors and omissions on this page to the IMDb database managers. They will be examined and if approved will be included in a future update. Clicking the 'Edit page' button will take you through a step-by-step process.

You may add a new episode for this TV series by clicking the 'add episode' button