The only thing that kept me watching to the end was the magnificent cast. If it weren’t for Benedict Cumberbatch, Mark Strong, John Hurt, Gary Oldman, Toby Jones, Colin Firth, and more (Tom Hardy even had a minor role) I would’ve stopped watching after the first 20 minutes. (I usually give a movie a solid twenty minutes. If twenty minutes in fails to capture me, it’s usually not worth my time).
How could they make such a boring movie with such an amazing cast? Maybe because they spent all their money on a bunch of top tier actors and didn’t pay enough attention to the writing and the editing. Seriously, the editing. I don’t mean to say there were errors in dialogue being slightly off when the actors are speaking, or a scene fades for too long, or something like that. What I mean by editing is that the sequence of events shown to the audience is purposefully cut so that it starts in a flashback and then jumps around to different times, also known as “In media res” a classic latin term that literally means “Into the middle of things” and although this works amazingly for movies like Memento, in Tinker Tailor, Soldier, Spy, I was completely lost. In fact I had to pause the movie about half an hour into it and look up the plot on Wikipedia just to get a sense of things.
Sure, going into the movie, I knew that it would be more of a “thinker” movie than usual, but I honestly just felt lost, not like, “Ahhhh, cool, I GET it!”
Ultimately not worth the time spent on it. (Luckily I got to watch it for free on Netflix)
Enfin – Better than: The Monuments Men
Instead, Watch: A Most Wanted Man (Also adapted from author John le Carre who wrote Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy)
or Imitation Game
or Bridge of Spies