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Reilly: Ace of Spies 

A dramatization of the missions and adventures of the greatest spy in British history.
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1  
1983  
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 win & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Series cast summary:
Sam Neill ...  Sidney Reilly 12 episodes, 1983
Michael Bryant ...  Narrator 11 episodes, 1983
Norman Rodway ...  Cummings 10 episodes, 1983
Tom Bell ...  Dzerzhinsky 6 episodes, 1983
Hugh Fraser ...  Hill 6 episodes, 1983
Jeananne Crowley Jeananne Crowley ...  Margaret 5 episodes, 1983
Clive Merrison ...  Savinkov 5 episodes, 1983
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Storyline

A dramatization of the missions and adventures of the greatest spy in British history.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The epic adventures of Britain's greatest spy [DVD Australia] See more »


Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 September 1983 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Reilly: Ace of Spies See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(12 parts) | (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In 1895, Sidney Reilly had an affair with Ethel Lillian Voynich, a married Russian author. In 1897, Voynich wrote a popular novel, "The Gadfly". It was rumored that the adventurous hero of the novel was based on Reilly. In 1956, the novel was made into a movie, and Dmitri Shostakovich was commissioned to compose the music. The same music, "The Gadfly-Romance", is heard as the theme to this show. See more »

Goofs

Nadia Massino did not marry Alfred Nobel - he died a bachelor in 1896 and according to the series, Reilly met her in the 20th century. Feliz Dzerzhinsky never met Reilly, and did not carry out the interrogation or execution. Reilly also was not connected with the forged letter that toppled the British government. See more »

Quotes

Mrs. Fried: Live for the present, die for the future.
See more »


Soundtracks

Romance
from "The Gadfly"
Written by Dmitri Shostakovich
Theme music of the miniseries (opening and closing credits)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The original Great Pretender
6 May 2013 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

Sam Neil is "Reilly, Ace of Spies" in this excellent miniseries from 1983. And let me add, he's much better looking than the real master spy Sidney Reilly.

This miniseries covers Reilly'a antics in the early part of the century, and the stuff that made him the model for Ian Fleming's James Bond. Over time, he spied for something like four countries, working at various times for England as part of Scotland yard, the Secret Service Bureau, and the Secret Intelligence Service. In 1918, he was part of a plot to overthrow the Bolsheviks in Russia and apparently planned to hold position of leader over there! The series not only covers Reilly's spying exploits and his ruthlessness, but also his way with women. Sam Neill is fabulous as Reilly - attractive, charming, cold, calculating, and confident.

How much of Reilly's story is true is unknown, and perhaps it was expanded as dramatic license, but he is believed to be the first superspy, and there's no doubt that he was very successful at what he did.

There is a lot of history to be had in this miniseries, supported with great production values. Though the series was filmed in England, France, and Malta, one really believes one is in various Russian locales as well as other places. And the detail in the sets and costumes is fantastic.

The various stories can be somewhat confusing, but that's one of the things that makes it so engrossing. Real life can be messy. Sometimes your friends are, in reality, your enemies in the spy game. Sometimes going into a situation, goals change. Reilly stayed sharp throughout, ferreting out enemies and finding advantageous situations. A real master spy. An excellent, often exciting, often suspenseful, always interesting miniseries.


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