Tag Archives: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

2012 Oscar Nominations are Out! Cue the Fart Sounds!

Today around 8:30 am Eastern time, the 2012 Academy Award Nominations were announced by the lovely Jennifer Lawrence (Mystique Jr.) and some old guy I did not want to research his name or title on.

With that, talking to the good Dr. Kronner, I think on my end, it basically ended in a few shrugs. He was bit more incensed because his beloved Fast Five [LIES!] was not nominated because the Academy does not recognize ‘general public movies’. The list is typical with the favorites (The Artist, The Descendants) while a few pleasant surprises entered in (seriously, go watch A Better Life and Demián Bichir’s performance) and then a few what-whats?! (see: 9/11 movie I refuse to mention).

Martin Scorcese’s Hugo leads the way with 11 noms, followed by the movie no one wants the see that everyone should see – The Artist with 10 nominations. I am sure there will be a post on what we all thing got snubbed (where the crap is Drive?), and who does not belong (according to the good Doctor, Bridesmaids doesn’t deserve to be part of the party, so debate away) so I will not go into major detail about those. All I know is there is a reason for the comments section below so have it…

With that, I have your nominees for the 2012 Oscars on February 26th via EW because I like copy & paste:

Continue reading 2012 Oscar Nominations are Out! Cue the Fart Sounds!

Grizzly Review: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

The world of espionage, spies, secrets, and traitors isn’t necessarily what the James Bond movies make it out to be, quite the contrary actually. The car chases, gunfights, sexy sidekicks, and dry martinis aren’t the job. Instead, the world of a spy consists of endless amounts of research, chain smoking, and a lot of talking. The conversations, though, can be as heated, if not even more so, than your run-in-the-mill gun battle.

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, which is based on the novel of the same name by John Le Carre, follows retired agent George Smiley (Gary Oldman), who must come back to work to find a Soviet spy that is hidden in MI6, nicknamed the Circus. The man in charge, Control (John Hurt), is convinced that a mole is hidden within the Circus after he does some intensive research and studying with information that he’s been given from a reliable source.

The possibilities, according to Control, are “Tinker” who is Percy Alleline (Toby Jones), “Tailor” who is Bill Haydon (Colin Firth), “Soldier” who is Roy Bland (Ciaran Hinds), “Poor Man” who is Toby Esterhase (David Dencik), and “Beggar Man” who is Smiley himself. The beginning of the film reveals that there’s a Hungarian general who knows the identity of the mole. Jim Prideaux (Mark Strong) is sent to retrieve the information, but the mission goes bad, alerting the Soviets of MI6’s suspicion.


This leads Smiley to be forced into retirement by Control, who soon after passes away. Smiley is then brought back and given some very valuable information by a man named Ricki Tarr (Tom Hardy), a rogue agent who travels around the world searching for information that may benefit the MI6 during the Cold War. Smiley listens to his story, and considering the failed Hungarian mission, as well as a successful Soviet operation named Operation Witchcraft, he pursues it further, enlisting the help of fellow agent and apprentice, Peter Guillam (Benedict Cumberbatch).

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy is a beautiful, intense, and sometimes extremely confusing spy film that trades in the usual action for something much more effective; edge-of-your-seat dialogue. The constant interaction between the characters keep things more than exciting, and the sometimes puzzling narrative is both saved and clarified by the use of conversation that literally had my heart racing. Gary Oldman’s flawless performance as George Smiley is a cinematic revelation. His calm and collected manner is sometimes eerie considering the situation, and the one time that he does raise his voice, it’s almost enough to frighten the viewer, especially considering the context.

Tom Hardy and Colin Firth are also absolutely amazing as spies who know things that everyone else wants to, but Mark Strong is surprisingly strong in his rather short but extremely necessary role. Personally, I’m a huge fan of his. I think he’s able to adapt to his environment extremely well, with enough diversity to successfully play both a bad guy and a good guy, sometimes in the same movie. It’s Tom Hardy though, that has probably the most screen time in the entire film besides Oldman, which is surprising considering how little he is shown in the trailer, and how far down he is in the opening credits. I’m not here to complain though, after his performances in Inception, Warrior and RockNRolla, he’s most definitely solidified himself a spot in being one of the best young actors in Hollywood today.

The direction by Tomas Alfredson is gorgeously mundane, and I mean that in the absolute best way possible. He recreates the 70s film style so well here that I felt as if I was doing a double feature with Marathon Man. You might recognize his name as being the director of the equally as fantastic vampire love story, Let The Right One In. Alfredson seems to have a knack for creating films with little action that are almost as exciting as a Transformers movie.

The film also plays as a retrospective, taking snippets of certain scenes and placing them in other scenes, which then leads them to go back to that original scene, but instead it moves forward a little bit. This allows the film to literally be a puzzle, with pieces being filled in left and right until the finale where everything is in place and the universal “aha!” moment is reached. Instead of me trying to explain it, think of it as an episode of How I Met Your Mother, how they flip back and forth between the present and other important times that relate to the story being told. You all know what I’m talking about, let’s just move on.

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy is brutally violent when it needs to be, dryly funny at times, but it’s also a fantastically plotted film that requires quite a bit of attention from the viewer. I’ll be honest, this and Warrior were the only two films of the year where I didn’t look at my watch once to see how much time there was left. For a two hour film consisting mostly of dialogue, that’s pretty damn good if you ask me.

5/5 Grizzly’s

Benedict Cumberbatch on The Hobbit, Star Trek 2, and ‘Sherlock’ Season 3?

Benedict Cumberbatch is becoming quite the commodity. He just appeared in the acclaimed Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, and he’s quickly becoming a phenomenon in the UK. with the success of Sherlock. In addition, he’ll show up later next year in the 2nd movie of The Hobbit series, which we’ll get back to in a minute. First let’s address the fact that it’s been recently reveled that he (along with Doctor Who’s Noel Clarke) will appear in J.J. Abrams’ next Star Trek movie.

Cumberbatch will play the villain in the much-anticipated sequel, and that’s about all we know. When he was asked about it by Collider at the Television Critics Association Winter Press Tour in Pasadena, this is what he said:

There’s a lawyer standing here saying that I can’t say anything. I’m hugely, hugely excited and I’m very, very flattered. I’m very, very excited, but obviously I’m not here to talk about that. I will, in the future, I’m sure. I’m just getting my head around the fact that it’s happened. If you’ll forgive me, I’ll pass on that. But, my headline is that I’m over the moon.

Not a lot to go on there, but rumors have been flying for months that the secret villain will in fact be Kirk’s nemesis Kahn. This was compounded by all the previous casting news had revolved around Latino actors trying out for the part…

Concerning his involvement in The Hobbit (which stars his Sherlock co-star Martin Freeman as the lead), Cumberbatch may have recently let something slip he wasn’t supossed to…

“I’m playing Smaug through motion-capture and voicing the Necromancer, which is a character in the Five Legions War or something which I’m meant to understand. He’s not actually in the original Hobbit. It’s something [Peter Jackson]’s taken from Lord Of The Rings that he wants to put in there.”

 

Now Empire had some thoughts on said quote, this is their theory…

Now those familiar with the book will notice immediately the big new piece of information here. Assuming that Cumberbatch does mean the Battle of Five Armies (which seems safe), then this points to one way that Peter Jackson and co. have expanded the book’s story to fill two films, and provide a more seamless link to The Lord Of The Rings.

Readers will know that the Necromancer is Sauron, and that Gandalf disappears halfway through (the book of) The Hobbit to lead a coalition force and drive the Necromancer out of his Mirkwood stronghold. But in the book they dispatch the Necromancer back to (as it turns out) Mordor well before the Battle of Five Armies. Here, however, it looks like he’s going to turn up to the finale in person, presumably at the head of the goblin and Warg army, and face Gandalf’s team there.

If that is the case, it’s a narratively neat way to combine the two story threads, that of Bilbo and the dwarves and the other following Gandalf and his team. It also gives the goblins a stronger motivation to suddenly turn up: in the book, they’re avenging the earlier death of one of their leaders and (like all the other armies present) hoping to get their grubby hands on the dragon’s hoard. If they’re incited or led by Sauron, however, their actions will hang more coherently with their behaviour later in Lord Of The Rings.

Interesting theory, and one I guess we will have confirmed or denied December 14th of this year. Anyhow, Benedict was also asked about a return for a 3rd Season of Sherlock, a question which he eluded and said only that he would ‘like’ to do another one, scared of what he could or could not confirm, but lucky for us one of his producers (Rebecca Eaton) stepped in and confirmed just moment later that we will get another dose of Holmes and Watson in the form of a 3rd season.

So appears to be good news all around as far as I’m concerned. Cumberbatch is owning…

New Trailer – Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy

So we have a trailer for the new film from the director of Let the Right One In Tomas Alfredson. Based on the novel “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy” written by the legend of espionage novels John le Carré.  Enjoy the trailer and we can discuss after.

Continue reading New Trailer – Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy