Sunday, January 15, 2012

You've Seen the Movie, Now Read the Book

We went out to the AFI to see "Tinker, Taylor, Soldier, Spy"; we were open to seeing "The Artist", but K wanted to see whichever was in the big theater.

It has been at least 25 years since I read the book, and my memories of it are a bit sketchy--was Ricky Tarr's fiasco in Hong Kong or Istanbul? Jim Prideau's setup in Budapest or Prague? Yet I remembered enough that the whole movie made sense, even with the bits of dialogue here and there that I didn't quite hear. As soon as the lights went up, though, she said, Just who killed whom? I promised a synopsis on the ride home. From what she overheard on the way through the lobby, apparently she was not the only one who found the movie hard to follow in parts. I suppose the true Le Carre students saw the movie the weekend it opened.

(For the record, she is not planning to read the book.)


  1. I think one problem is that they've conflated more than one book into the movie - the entire Smiley series, as I understood from something I read (I've never read a whole le Carre and I think he ... no, don't get me started). The film was very nice-looking though and the Budapest scene is in a lovely ornate courtyard just near our flat

  2. As I say, it has been a while since I read the books; if there is more to the Smiley Series than Tinker, Tailor and Smiley's People then I haven't read it all. My impression is that the plot elements were all from TTSS, but that a snippet or two of information came from Smiley's People