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The Tailor of Panama (2001)

R  |   |  Drama, Thriller  |  4 May 2001 (USA)
6.1
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Ratings: 6.1/10 from 22,395 users   Metascore: 66/100
Reviews: 211 user | 103 critic | 31 from Metacritic.com

A tailor living in Panama reluctantly becomes a spy for a British agent.

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Writers:

(novel), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Marta
...
Harold Pinter ...
Uncle Benny
...
Francesca Deane
...
Lola Boorman ...
Sarah Pendel
...
Luxmore
...
Rafi Domingo
...
Teddy, the Reporter
...
Maltby
...
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 nefarious past and connections to all of the top political and gangster figures in Panama. The tailor also has a wife, who works for the Panamanian president and a huge debt. The mission is to learn what the President intends to do with the Panama Canal. But what the two do is concoct a tremendous fictional tale about former mercenaries who are ready to topple the current government and are willing to work with Britain and the US to do so. Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

panama | spy | tailor | president | canal | See All (130) »

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:

|

Language:

|

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:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Actor Pierce Brosnan once auditioned for this film's director John Boorman's earlier movie Excalibur (1981). According to director John Boorman's audio-commentary, it was a poor audition and Brosnan didn't get the part. Boorman apologized to Brosnan for not giving him a part. See more »

Goofs

When Harry chases Andy, he distinctly presses the center of the steering wheel to honk his horn. But he's driving a Land Rover Discovery Series II, which uses 2 horn buttons on the spokes of the wheel; the center is the airbag, and pressing it has no effect. 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

Featured in The Perfect Fit (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

La Gallina Fina
Written by Christian García
Performed by Samy Sandoval y Sandra Sandoval
Courtesy of SSS Records
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.


23 of 35 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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