A Perfect Spy details
|Starring:||Sarah Badel, Alan Howard, Rüdiger Weigang, Peter Egan, Ray McAnally, Peggy Ashcroft, Jane Booker|
|Studio:||2 ENTERTAIN VIDEO|
A Perfect Spy - Disc 1
|TBC Disc 1|
A Perfect Spy - Disc 2
|TBC Disc 2|
A Perfect Spy - Disc 3
|TBC Disc 3|
|Run time:||6 hours 14 minutes|
|Rental release:||06 Jun 2005|
Most helpful review
An Imperfect Spy seriesBy cyril kavanagh from London , 01 Jul 2005
[Highly rated reviewer]The late great Arthur Hopcraft scripted this series and clearly the BBC hoped that it would be as good as 'Tinker, Tailor,Soldier, ..Spy'. Whereas the latter had a sterling cast (Alec Guinness included) the former has a tortured Peter Egan who overeggs his part but Ray McNally is superb as the delinquent father. Other cast members lack the gravitas, the sheer elan of 'Tinker, Tailor..' Alan Howard is far too smirky and smug. However, the dank, dark stink of betrayal that lies at the heart of the British establishment which was brought to the small screen so well in 'Tinker, Tailor...' is here in evidence. 'A Perfect Spy' lacks the punch, the poignancy and the impact of 'Tinker...' but it is well worth watching for it is in its way a kind of lament for this type of drama which faded with the demise of the Berlin Wall.
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Perfect Spy StoryBy Martinbuckley (25 reviews) from London , 25 Feb 2012Peter Egan is so good in this that it's sad he did not go on to real greatness as an actor - that he either wasn't offered, or didn't take, the opportunities. At any rate, this is an outstandingly nuanced and touching performance. The other star of this miniseries is Ray McAnally, who gives a brilliantly beguiling performance. For me, if this has a weakness it's that not enough is done to explain the Egan character's motivations, and I wish Hopcraft's otherwise admirable script had found ways to flesh him out more. Nevertheless, this is six-odd hours of extreme pleasure, a truly adult entertainment, intelligent and humane, and in my opinion superior to, for example, the Killing. Much of the pleasure here is, precisely, the slow pace and detail that such a long-running time permits. The emphasis isn't on mystery -- it isn't a whodunnit, it's why whyhedunnit, and we sense how close the material is to le Carre's heart. It's very handsomely mounted, too.
Excellent entertainment for the long winter evenings.
Sins of the fathersBy Barontufsap (3 reviews) , 30 May 2011Peter Egan's portrayal of the double-dealing Magnus Pym, with his one-sided smile, accurately reflects le Carre's novel. If you liked the book you'll love the film. Rudiger Weingartner as his Czech collaborator is a superb contrast in style. The result is a picture of the seedy world of spying and the lives of such as Kim Philby.who also had a paternal role model to live down to.
A perfect spyBy a customer from London , 06 Jan 2011This was a perfect book about a perfect spy, made with care to detail into a perfect film.
This is long haul stuff, but its dedication to the book is astonishing. The performances are fantastic in ALL cases, in particular Brotherhood, Pym, Axel & Ricky.
It is rare to find such a film that engrosses you so much & it shows that programmes such 24 et al, can be achieved by the Brits with proper time & funding.
Less than perfectBy SixteenStringJack (7 reviews) from London , 09 Dec 2009After the magnificent Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, this was a big disappointment. Peter Egan rolls out the easy charm on which he built a career but it doesn't compensate the lack of general action, some embarrassing acting and consistently flat camera work. I'd remembered the series being fantastic when it was shown in the dim and distant 80s but then again I was only nine at the time! My advice is read the book instead.
Customer ReviewBy a customer from UK , 23 Jun 2008The 3-disk set is of 7 episodes of a John Le Carre novel of the same name serialized for television in the late 1980s. Casting was good, especially Ray Macanally in the role of Rickie Pym in a masterly a performance as the con-man and father of our hero, played by Peter Egan. Only Peter Egan, a competent actor, was mis-cast. He never succeeded in projecting a young man's version of his father's charm, so seemed implausible both as a spy with conmanship in his bloodstream, and as someone capable of firing guns and engaging in unarmed combat (though this was never depicted directly). The play was faithful to the book, but its unremitting tone of gloom, reflecting the Cold-War 1950s, the lost world of upper-middle-class values which even those with first-hand experience might prefer to forget, plus Egan's inability to engage my sympathies meant that in the end I persisted only out of curiosity for what form the denouement might take. Of course! Suicide! Woodenly directed, the appetite and need for betrayal depicted seemed in the end little more than a study in individual morbid psychology.
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