Based on John le Carré’s bestselling book, Anton Corbijn directs this modern-day thriller with Academy Award–winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, Rachel McAdams, Robin Wright, and two-time Academy Award nominee Willem Dafoe headlining an ensemble cast.
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Anton Corbijn brings a cool, restrained style to what is essentially a study of how intelligence agencies operate nowadays. Working off of John Le Carre's novel, screenwriter Andrew Bovell sneaks in a blistering attack on institutional decay and suggests that any government's will "to make the world a safer place" is, ah, complicated. And, as Angela Merkel knows best, those pesky Americans simply cannot be trusted!
The most wanted cinema: handy camera with no reason whatsoever except to perpetuate the misery that recent formal television series brought and imposed as an insurmountable model. Like Bigelow's latest film, this film also seems a version of a two-hour episode of "Homeland Security" with the very same result. Indistinct.
A very intelligent, pared back spy thriller with both German and American security agencies monitoring a person of great interest when he arrives unexpectedly in Hamburg and seeks refuge within the Islamic community there. Phillip Seymour Hoffman saved his best performance for last as this was sadly his final film.
As gorgeous and spare as anything else Corbijn has done -- but here he captures fiery, candid little moments that shake up what could've been another cool and distant espionage thriller in less capable hands. Dafoe's nervous, concerned banker, McAdams' emotionally compromised professional and Hoffman's lumbering, gruff and embittered team leader subtly humanize a stunning critique of extraordinary rendition.
Having read the book, it's a good adaptation, knowing that le Carré can sometimes be very hard to follow. McAdams just doesn't do it for me. Just quit acting, please. Hoffman gives a subtle yet powerful performance and Corbijn's direction is discreet.
An old fashioned spy thriller in a new fashioned world is somewhat elevated by strong performances and stylish visuals but not enough to make it anything special. Corbjin's adaptation of the Le Carre tome feels antiseptic and not engaging at times and is brought down by a miscast Adams in a key role. Hoffman is of course brilliant here well matched by Nina Hoss, Willem Dafoe and a strong supporting cast.