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Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
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Reviews & Ratings for
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy More at IMDbPro »

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27 out of 52 people found the following review useful:

I thought I was an idiot until I spoke to someone after the movie

Author: Bulent Boytorun from London, England
16 September 2011

I really was looking forward to this movie. Haven't read the book, haven't watched the TV Series. So everything about the movie was new to me. Had they supplied a handbook explaining who is who what is what and where is where and especially when is when, I might have followed the story a little bit. But even then, I am not so sure. I really thought that either my English language was not enough or my IQ until I spoke to one of the other viewers on the exit of the theatre and -thankfully- she confirmed to me that it was neither my English nor my IQ. The film is just plainly bad. Nothing moves or means anything. Obviously an intricate story is there, but someone has to be able to tell you that. Yes the acting is excellent, no denying that. But it's more like different -and totally unrelated- sections of a script being rehearsed in a top level theater school. A real time waster.

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28 out of 54 people found the following review useful:

Better than an all night insurance seminar

Author: Tom Michael
30 January 2012

I very seldom write reviews. Films are art, and art, is many things to many people. Given the source of this material, I was really expecting something much, much better.

The beginning was pretty good. The first 10 or 15 minutes really put you on the edge of your seat. Then, it happened. NOTHING! This was a dialog film and I knew that going in but the whole movie? We are talking espionage, secrets, covert ops! This thing talked itself to death. I found myself looking for the fast forward button in the theater, hoping to move this dinosaur along. I love Gary Oldman and was expecting, I don't know, maybe a performance? I think of his work in Dracula and wonder, where did he go? This film was slow, boring, it dragged and dragged. After an hour and a half I was so looking forward to ending. When it finally came, after what seemed to be a second lifetime, it ended... Badly!

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28 out of 54 people found the following review useful:


Author: jordanmarkharding from United Kingdom
18 September 2011

I saw the trailer for the film in august and immediately wanted to see it. After waiting 18 days for the film i went to see it and i have to say...i wasn't disappointed in the slightest. It wasn't what i thought it was going to be at all but none the less a brilliant spectacle. We start withe a meeting between the boys where control fire himself and smiley we then pan to the minister who explains to smiley that there is a mole at the top of the "circus". Throughout the film mystery, murder, lust and torture pursue. I wont give anything away but the film does have a brilliant ending which includes an appropriate song ;) and all your questions will be answered...enjoy.

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49 out of 96 people found the following review useful:

It's AWFUL! Save your money and your time, give this one a miss!

Author: muhammad-chowdhry from United Kingdom
21 September 2011

The trailers were incredibly misleading and it is not the audience's fault if they expected more. Nowhere near as good as the book.

This film is truly awful. There is no emotional development of the characters, so you don't care about them. Suspense is not built and the plot is unnecessarily slow and plodded along. Key scenes are shortened or inexplicably cut in order to give the illusion of mystery. In addition, there are random scenes which do not add to the film in any remote way and can only be described as 'filler'. There is no continuity or flow. The soundtrack is obscene.

Oldman is not acting, rather just staying very still and looking pensive. Hurt's mannerisms are a carbon copy of his role as Sutcliffe in V for Vendetta. Firth is pompous. Cumberbatch and Hardy have some redeeming moments. The rest are anonymous.

I heard a rumour that this was Oscar tipped. After the Hurt Locker and The Social Network soundtrack beating Inception... it is clear the Oscars are useless.

Worthless film, save your money. Watching paint dry would be time better spent

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52 out of 102 people found the following review useful:

Stinker, staler: an epic in dull, plodding movie making

Author: f-odds-1 from United Kingdom
18 October 2011

This is one of those films in which everybody looks at everybody else deeply meaningfully, to convey a story that by now lacks both originality and interest (who is the mole in the organization?! wowee!). The characters even walk slowly and purposefully to ensure you realize they're involved in something terribly significant.

Every small step of the plot is unfolded with the kind of heavy handed, overblown technique so beloved of the pretentious auteur directors of the 1960s. I thought they didn't make them like this any more, but unfortunately I was wrong. I'd like to give such an obviously high quality cast and production team the benefit of the doubt; that they caught me in a bad mood on a bad day. But when you see even railway trains overacting you have objective evidence that you're watching a film whose makers think they're a darn sight smarter than they really are. One cutaway shows a portion of railway track switching — presumably symbolism that someone in the story just got the point (geddit?).

I'm sorry I couldn't like this one better; it is meant to give us a realistic view of the tedious but dangerous business of cold war spying. But it takes ponderous, pretentious movie making to new heights. Perhaps we should put it on the record as the first film in which the techniques of method acting are extended to infest everyone concerned, right down to the chief grip.

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57 out of 112 people found the following review useful:

What were they thinking?

Author: jillshureauthor from California
8 January 2012

I'm a huge fan of spy movies! I loved The Day of the Jackal, The Bourne Identity. However, this film fails on so many levels it's hard to know where to start. First, we learn almost nothing about the characters. Secondly, I really got tired of watching filing, shuffling of papers, and scenes of men sitting in chairs over and over without any real action. The cuts back and forth are confusing, the actors look extremely unattractive, and most of the scenes are of men sitting down and talking. Or not talking. They stare, they stare again, they mutter. I found this film to be toxic it was so dull. And if the scenes are from the 1970s, how about sideburns on the men? Or double vented suits? This film was a terrible disappointment.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Riveting Esponiage Film!

Author: g-bodyl from United States
30 May 2013

Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy is about as realistic you can get depicting spies in a movie. Based of John Le Carre's novel, this film is complex, well-acted, and it doesn't rely on car chases or action sequences to tell a story. I like action scenes, but there are some movies I'd prefer to watch without them and this is one of them. This is a story that could happen in real life and that is what makes this movie even better.

Tomas Alfredson's film is about how there was a mole detected in the British MI6 and how everyone tries to find out who exactly the mole is.

As mentioned before, this is very well-acted. Gary Oldman makes a perfect George Smiley with his long raincoats. There are other great, well-respected British actors here such as Colin Firth, John Hurt, Mark Strong, and Toby Jones. They really did well with all the turns and twists and I always had a changing opinion about who is the mole or not.

Overall, this is a riveting spy thriller that does well without the action sequences. I found myself hooked to the film even though movie many people found it boring. I did feel it moved a little too slow in parts and the length was a little long. But, all-in-all, this reminds me of the old spy thrillers from the 60's. I rate this film 8/10.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Confusion reigns

Author: pegd-1 from Connecticut
10 May 2013

I was so looking forward to seeing the film when it first came out....I must say as I was walking out of the theater I felt confused and wondered if I was getting too old to appreciate contemporary cinema...Recently I returned to the Smiley trilogy, book form, and decided to give Tinker, Tailor-movie form-another go...

Well, it was a bit much....Really, Smiley swimming? Prideaux in a shopping mall? What happened to Guillam? Way too many liberties taken with the script, then the smoke, although I did enjoy Oldman as Smiley...Thought Firth was miscast or I suspect it was very poor character development...Another thing, the actors, apart from Oldman, didn't seem to be enjoying themselves....Well, what a shame with a script adding chaos to a perfectly good story which has enough of chaos to begin with....

Very Disappointing....

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Compelling but confusing

Author: Tom Henehan from United States
21 December 2012

I didn't see this in the theater, and just watched it on TV. (Well, "It's not TV, it's HBO," heh heh.)

I've read many John le Carre novels, including TTSS and most of the George Smiley saga ~ but not recently. Nevertheless, I had a very difficult time following the plot of this film.

The 2-3 pages worth of User Reviews I just read seem to be split between high praise and full-out criticism. My reaction is somewhere in-between. I was NOT put off, for example, by the generally seedy look of all the settings; I accepted that as realistic. My main problem was with the lack of exposition, and the seemingly random back-and-forth transitions between present time and flashback.

I find it hard to believe that ANYONE could follow this film who had not RECENTLY read the book or watched the BBC video.

Nevertheless, for whatever reason, I couldn't stop watching, I had to watch a second time, and now I have the book on hold at the library and the Alec Guinness series lined up in my Netflix queue.

While I found the film difficult to understand, something about the film made me really WANT to understand. The look, the mood, the acting ~ all so excellent that I couldn't take my eyes off the screen, despite having no idea what the hell was going on. I suppose that's a recommendation, of sorts...

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Stunning movie-making

Author: sergepesic from Minneapolis, USA
15 October 2012

Cold war, the Iron Curtain, spies and traitors, cats and mice, and it is sometimes hard to tell who is who. These are the different kind of crazy 70's, not so much sex, drugs and rock and roll, more dark rooms, swilling whiskey, drab man in drab offices, painting world in the color of blood. It is all shrouded in patriotic colors and high ideals of God and country ( strangely how nothing changed since), but in harsh reality it is all about power, control and backstabbing in the lofty corridors of rulers of the realm. John Le Carre reinvented the modern spy novel. No more buxom blonds and car chases. Just gloomy corners, musty hotel rooms and the rancid smell of betrayal. This is stunning movie-making, and a lesson in classy acting.Precious gift these days.

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