Tag Archives: cold war

Jack Strong by Wladyslaw Pasikowski (2014)

Ryszard Kuklinski could be perceived as a national hero or as a traitor. This ambiguity is only mentioned and in Pasikowski’s film, Kuklinski is presented rather as a positive character.
The story told depicts hard moral and ethical dilemmas of one man who became an ally to the US during the 1970’s and 1980’s opposing to the Soviet ruling inside communist Poland.
Being a higly regarded official of the Polish army, he has access to top secret documentation which at one point hints at the Soviets aiming at the breakout of World War III via a realistically planned invasion on Poland. It is at that point that he decides to get in touch with the American embassy to help his country he knows to be gravely endangered.
It is a fascinating story and being based on true events, gives the thrills of serious historical issues that could have ended in a number of ways. But luckily (for Poland and perhaps the whole contemporary world) it ended up just fine. Supposedly because and thanks to the Seagull operation with Jack Strong as the source. 1989 saw the end of the Cold War and in 1997 Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic joined NATO.

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Filed under Cinema releases 2014, film reviews

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy by Tomas Alfredson

Adaptation of renowned John Le Carré’s novel of the same title. The famous writer also co-worked on the script.
Have my doubts whether somebody unacquainted with the book could easily follow the plot.
It’s a classic cinematic experience. Shot in very cold Scandinavian colours (director is Swedish originally), with impressive set design, costumes and props.
A very successful tool with old v. new eyewear to distinguish between flashbacks and present action. Great period recreation of 1970’s Budapest.
A few changes to the book are mainly geographically oriented, not sure why. Prague turned into Budapest and Bangkok into Istanbul. Budget constraints?
Other than that, the film looks as if it was made in 1970’s which is a plus. Gary Oldman as an introvertic opposite of 007 exceeds any expectations. He does not play George Smiley. He is George Smiley!
5 stars for the costumes and depiction of the world that is long gone and forgotten. But maybe not?
A nice brain teaser and classic cinema at its best!

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Filed under 2011 cinema releases, film reviews