In the early 1970s during the Cold War, the head of British Intelligence, Control, resigns after an operation in Budapest, Hungary goes badly wrong. It transpires that Control believed one of four senior figures in the service was in fact a Russian agent - a mole - and the Hungary operation was an attempt to identify which of them it was. Smiley had been forced into retirement by the departure of Control, but is asked by a senior government figure to investigate a story told to him by a rogue agent, Ricky Tarr, that there was a mole. Smiley considers that the failure of the Hungary operation and the continuing success of Operation Witchcraft (an apparent source of significant Soviet intelligence) confirms this, and takes up the task of finding him. Written by
Gary Oldman described Tomas Alfredson as taking a near-voyeuristic approach, by shooting with long lenses: "It was as if he was eavesdropping, like a peeping Tom, which is what you sort of want for a spy film." See more »
Lacon meets with Alleline and Bland. He is holding a sheet of paper prominently in his right hand. As the camera angle changes to Alleline, who says "Operation Witchcraft needs to remain secret," Lacon is instantly holding a cup of tea in his right hand instead. See more »
The acting was first-rate. The adaptation was horrible. There are so many holes in the plot I felt as though I missed the first 15 minutes of the movie......you know, the part where we're supposed to see the birth of the story line and some character development. Anyone who wasn't already familiar with the book would be completely lost. It's like I was watching part 2 of a two-part miniseries without having seen part 1. It was beyond disjointed. Did Cirian Hinds even have any lines in the movie?? He was in scene after scene but I don't remember him saying anything.
In any case, I was hugely disappointed in this film. The BBC miniseries with Alec Guiness is vastly superior.
14 of 21 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?