7.0/10
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30 user 73 critic

L'affaire Farewell (2009)

Trailer
2:21 | Trailer
The French intelligence service alerts the U.S. about a Soviet spy operation during the height of the Cold War, which sets off an unfortunate chain of events.

Director:

Christian Carion

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Guillaume Canet ... Pierre
Emir Kusturica ... Grigoriev
Alexandra Maria Lara ... Jessica
Ingeborga Dapkunaite ... Natasha
Philippe Magnan Philippe Magnan ... Mitterrand
Aleksey Gorbunov ... Choukhov (as Oleksii Gorbunov)
Dina Korzun ... Alina
Niels Arestrup ... Vallier
David Soul ... Hutton
Fred Ward ... Reagan
Willem Dafoe ... Feeney
Marc Berman Marc Berman ... Jacques
Christian Carion Christian Carion ... Favier
Evgeniy Kharlanov Evgeniy Kharlanov ... Igor (as Yevgeni Kharlanov)
Lauriane Riquet Lauriane Riquet ... Ophelie
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Storyline

In 1985, Sergei Gregoriev, a Soviet colonel, wants to force his nation to reform, so he leaks secret information to the West. He picks an unlikely contact, a Pierre Froment, French nebbish in the diplomatic corps. Gregoriev keeps a lot of balls in the air - a marriage, a teen son he's trying to bond with, a mistress who's a colleague at work; his tradecraft is equally reckless. Meanwhile, Froment keeps his spy work secret from his German wife, and Mitterrand uses Gregoriev's information to make France indispensable to Reagan and his government. When Gregoriev leaks a list of key Soviet moles and spies, Gorbachev is left without secret intelligence. Will Gregoriev get what he wants? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

spy | french | cold war | france | aids | See All (14) »

Taglines:

Moscow 1981. An act of treason that changed the world. See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site | Production Notes

Country:

France

Language:

French | English | Russian

Release Date:

23 September 2009 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Farewell See more »

Filming Locations:

France See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

€17,500,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | DTS

Color:

Color | Black and White (archive footage)| Color (archive footage)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Three languages are spoken in this filmed theatrical feature film production from France: French, English, and Russian. See more »

Goofs

There is a picture of General Secretary L.Breznev on the wall in the border crossing office. Actually the General Secretary was Andropov or Chernenko in that time. See more »

Connections

Featured in En bonne intelligence (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Run Like Hell
Performed by Pink Floyd
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User Reviews

Super understated slow boiler (Spy Game Plus)
5 May 2011 | by horacebSee all my reviews

Farewell is a spy drama set in Moscow/Russia in the early 1980's. It stars Guillaume Canet and Emir Custarica, both noted directors in their own rights.It is based on real events with the basic story correct though the nature of the two leading characters and a few events are somewhat changed or omitted.

The plot centres around the leaking of Russian intelligence to the French government. Sergei (Canet) works for the Russian secret service but has been recruited by (or volunteered to) the French government to pass intelligence data from his office. Sergei is doing this for purely moral reasons arguing that it will one day bring the system down and give his son a better future. His contact is a French engineer working in Moscow, Pierre, coerced in to helping by the French government and operating as Sergei's dropping point. The story develops around the personal relationship between Sergei and Pierre and also that of their families. Sergei is confident and casual but ultimately a little careless. While Pierre becomes paranoid and with his young family in tow begins to feel the stress.

The data turns out to industrial espionage on everything from the Space Shuttle to the US defence strategy and even secret communication codes. When the American are shown the information by the French (in a neat piece of one-upmanship) it is only a matter of time before action has to be taken and lives are in danger.

The pace is slow and constant and never flat. Tantalisingly delicate, a very light brush from the director allows the actors to communicate in manner rarely seen in Hollywood films. Similar with the cinematography which is used sparingly and always to accentuate the story. Watch out for the early scene where they first meet which simply says 'spies'. Then the scenes of northern Russia in winter.

This is a very smart film with excellent understated performances from all the cast. Watch out for several more famous actors in cameo and small roles. Fred Ward playing Ronald Reagan looks positively weird though they get away with it.

If you arrived here before viewing be sure, it is well worth watching. Spy Game plus.


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