Just Watched: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
I think I might have just found my film of the year gone by with this wonderful adaptation of John Le-Carre’s spy thriller set in the 60s, during the Cold War. The whole film is like a symphony with every piece at the right place, layered beautifully, with a not too dramatic background score like most spy thrillers and some rousing performances. This is not just a typical spy film, filled with jaw-dropping stunt sequences. This is a story of deception in the upper echelons of British intelligence where every scene holds significance, making it extremely important for the viewer to pay attention for the entire duration of the film.
Comparisons to the TV adaptation starring Alec Guinness are inevitable, but I’m sure this is the best that could be done for a feature film. Gary Oldman has delivered what, according to me, might be the most powerful performance of the year. Controlled, nonchalant and with an amazing zen-like demeanour even during crisis, he plays the lead, George Smiley to utter perfection. After having watched him in supporting roles for quite a while now, it’s refreshing to see him take center-stage here. It’s not just him though, for he’s ably supported by the brilliant Benedict Cumberbatch, who post-Sherlock is on quite a high, and Tom Hardy, the man who is having quite some time after Inception with Warrior and then The Dark Knight Rises up next, he’s the next big thing to look for in the coming year for sure. John Hurt and Mark Strong are barely there, but leave their mark. Performance wise, the only star who didn’t quite leave a mark was Colin Firth, from whom I think I ended up expecting a little too much, but at the end of the day, I’m not complaining.
If this is the sign of things to come in 2012, then I can’t wait a bit. Gary Oldman better get a Best Actor nod at the Oscars this year for this. He surely deserves at least that much. Oh, and I think I can actually forgive a certain Rohit Tiwari for spoiling this film for me months ago, though I’m still a tad miffed. Moreover, the Mamidipudi brothers are surprisingly good film company- Vishnu always was, and with Vallabh now, I’m in safe hands.
Personal Rating: 9.0/10