A twisting, turning Cold War set thriller. This cloak and dagger story focuses on a British intelligence expert tasked with sniffing out a suspected mole operating in the upper echelon of the queens spy service. Based on the novel by John le Carre, director Tomas Alfredson proves to be a practiced hand at establishing atmosphere, leaning on a filmmaking style that is visually interesting without being distractingly flashy. A fantastic cast including Gary Oldman, Colin Firth, John Hurt, Mark Strong, Tom Hardy, Cathy Bates and Benedict Cumberbatch. At the centre of the story is George Smiley a mild mannered but sharp intelligence expert solving his cases with brains not bravado.
Smiley is called out of retirement to track down a Russian double agent suspected of operating within the British Secret Intelligence Service. The former head narrowed his list of suspects down to five and its up to Smiley to finish what his old boss started. Filled with flashbacks, flash forwards and intriguing characters the story bounces and bumps along in unwieldy fashion but all pieces fall into place by the third act. Overall its a richly produced film and one that features a talented, top notch cast but there is a fine line separating complex from convoluted.