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The Tailor of Panama (2001)

R | | Drama, Thriller | 4 May 2001 (USA)
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A tailor living in Panama reluctantly becomes a spy for a British agent.

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Writers:

(novel), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Marta
...
Harold Pinter ...
Uncle Benny
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Francesca Deane
...
Lola Boorman ...
Sarah Pendel
...
Luxmore
...
Rafi Domingo
...
Teddy, the Reporter
...
Maltby
Martin Savage ...
Stormont
Edgardo Molino ...
Juan-David
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Storyline

John LeCarre's spy thriller is brought to the big screen. A British spy is banished to Panama after having an affair with an ambassador's mistress. Once there he makes connection with a local tailor with a criminal past and connections to all of the top political and gangster figures in Panama. The tailor also has a wife, who works for the canal administrator, and a huge debt. The spy's mission is to learn what the President intends to do with the Panama Canal, but he's really in business for himself, blackmailing the tailor into spinning a fantastic tale about the canal being sold to China and former mercenaries ready to topple the current government. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

panama | spy | tailor | president | canal | See All (126) »

Taglines:

In a place this treacherous, what a good spy needs is a spy of his own.

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexuality, language and some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

4 May 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El sastre de Panamá  »

Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$1,837,068 (USA) (30 March 2001)

Gross:

$13,491,653 (USA) (6 July 2001)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

First filmed adaptation of a John le Carré story for a decade. The most recent had been The Russia House (1990) and A Murder of Quality (1991). See more »

Goofs

In the high level intelligence briefing scene, the ribbons on General Dusenbaker's (Dylan Baker) uniform are displayed incorrectly. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
MI.6 Handler: Panama.
Andrew 'Andy' Osnard: Panama?
MI.6 Handler: Best I could do Andrew. Under the circumstances, given your sins. They were baying for blood.
See more »

Connections

References Frankenstein (1931) See more »

Soundtracks

Let's Face the Music and Dance
Written by Irving Berlin
Performed by Caetano Veloso
Courtesy of Universal International Music, B.V.
Under license from Universal Music Enterprises
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Great performances, great story ...
25 July 2004 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

In the present Fahrenheit 9/11 atmosphere on re-watching this film I find much to admire not due to its incendiary political comment but from the skill of its making and its continued relevance which is the sign of a film which, I hope, will endure.

Ignoring the politics, for a moment, there is a lot to appreciate in Boorman's quick editing, interplay of farce and tragedy and ability to sum up a very complex story with telling detail. He draws stunning performances out of his actors (apart from the ever annoying Jamie Lee Curtis). Brosnan shifts character bewilderingly but by the end his roguish charm has been fully shed to reveal the horror of the man beneath, making Geoffrey Rush's exploitation believable and pathetic.

This ranks, along with the Killing Fields and Salvador (I'm sure I've forgotten many other worthy examples), as one of my favourite angry anti-war, anti-interventionism films arguing that where the justifying intelligence isn't good enough the rich and powerful states do not have the right to interfere, at least unless their motivations are purer than self interest. On the other hand, it is a great human drama with the country which serves as its backdrop used to great effect to emphasise the human tragedies played out within. Watch and enjoy, but you may find the first 10-15 minutes difficult until you have settled with the style - definitely worth a second watching.


24 of 36 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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