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Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy/ Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocal

I enjoyed the look and feel and the perfectly modulated performances of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy. A Cold War thriller that's a captivating cerebral puzzle doesn't come along very often. I watched the film assuming that all the confusing allusions and connections that I couldn’t follow would reveal themselves in the final act. Turns out, I would make a terrible spy. 

When the answer to “Who is the mole?” was revealed, I realized the tricky plot was just too incomprehensible for either me or a viewer unfamiliar with the original BBC miniseries or novel.

Surprisingly, the better Cold War spy movie this season is a blockbuster sequel complete with thrilling foot chases and heightened action scenes — starring one of my least favorite actors. Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocal takes Tom Cruise and the music from the past MI show and films and ignites the franchise.  

Ghost Protocal is fast and explosive but it’s also a clever, slight-of-hand thriller. And by the time Cruise makes his way across the surface of the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, the world’s tallest skyscraper, you realize you hopped on to one of the best movie rides of the year.

Simply put:  Spy vs Spy?  Like a surprising plot twist, Mission Impossible beats Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy.

Award potential: TTSS is considered a frontrunner for Best Picture. In a year where a film must take multiple voter’s #1 pick to get a nomination, I don’t think so. Gary Oldman has a good shot at supporting actor. Tom Hardy increases his star potential but is an unlikely nominee. No major awards for Mission Impossible.

The ten buck review:  Mission Impossible Ghost Protocal: worth ten bucks.  Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy: not worth ten bucks.

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