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The Looking Glass War [DVD] [2005]


Price: £4.86 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
Only 6 left in stock (more on the way).
Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.
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The Looking Glass War [DVD] [2005] + The Spy Who Came In From The Cold [DVD] [1965]
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Product details

  • Actors: Christopher Jones, Pia Degermark, Ralph Richardson, Paul Rogers, Anthony Hopkins
  • Directors: Frank Pierson
  • Producers: John Box
  • Format: Subtitled, PAL
  • Language: Italian, Hungarian, German, English, French
  • Subtitles: Turkish, Swedish, Portuguese, Polish, Norwegian, Italian, Hungarian, Hindi, Greek, German, French, Finnish, Dutch, Danish, Arabic, English
  • Dubbed: French, German, Hungarian, Italian
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 12
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 17 Oct. 2005
  • Run Time: 108 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000AAVDF6
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 6,138 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

The Cold War heats up with action and suspense in this powerful adaptation of the best-seller by master espionage writer John Le Carré (The Russia House). Academy Award® winner Anthony Hopkins (1991 Best Actor, The Silence of the Lambs), Christopher Jones (Ryan’s Daughter) and Academy Award® nominee Ralph Richardson (1984 Best Supporting Actor, Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes) star in this unforgettable thriller. In exchange for political asylum, Polish defector Leiser (Jones) agrees to return behind the Iron Curtain to confirm the suspicions of the British Security Chief that East Germany is building a rocket in violation of the disarmament pact. Once in East Berlin, Leiser falls in love with a beautiful young girl and the couple decides to flee the espionage experts — both East and West — to start a new life together. But they soon find themselves pawns in a brutal game where the stakes are human lives.

Customer Reviews

3.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

60 of 63 people found the following review helpful By Kona TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 21 Mar. 2007
Format: DVD
The year is 1969 and the Cold War is raging. A British spy who was investigating missiles on the East German border has just been killed. The West needs another agent fast and they hire Leiser (Christopher Jones), a handsome and clever young man from Poland. He agrees to be a spy in exchange for political asylum in the West. He sneaks into East Germany and finds not only missiles, but also an very pretty girl, while his trainers (Anthony Hopkins, Ralph Richardson) anxiously wait to hear from him.

This isn't the James Bond kind of spy movie; there's no glitz or glamour and definitely no humor. Instead, it's a grim, pitiless look at the men who pull the strings in the espionage game. There isn't a lot of action; the bleak and hopeless mood of the times pervades the story. With Hopkins and Richardson around, one has to wonder why they recruited an outsider to join British Intelligence, but if you can overlook this plot hole, it is an engrossing film. Handsome Christopher Jones, a James Dean look-alike, is appropriately petulant and charismatic. It's a shame his voice had to be dubbed; one wonders what his voice really sounds like. Young Anthony Hopkins brings his usual intensity and dignity to a rather thankless role. It's an interesting and quite cynical look at the paranoia that characterized the 60s.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Shamrock 747 on 19 Feb. 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
If you are a le Carre fan watch the film first. Basically a good story, but disappointing.
The film starts very well by showing how a road accident confirms to an department struggling for its survival the need to mount an operation in an attempt to justify its existence. It is from this point the film is spoilt by a lack of background detail, as though parts of the story had to be cut to keep within budget. Also the use of a young illegal immigrant as the agent with little knowledge and training coupled with his attitude put into a no win situation stretches the imagination to the desperate state of the 'Department's' resources. The final scenes of children playing give a somewhat ironic twist to the opening scenes. Not the best adaptation of a J le C novel, but it does introduce a character who is to become a main feature in later books, (not certain where this one comes in the order of writing). I think a BBC version would do the book more justice. Alternatively, read the book, don't bother with the film.
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30 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Levy TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 4 Dec. 2009
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
The screen adaption of John Le Carre's The Looking Glass War hasn't improved with age. Frank Piersens' direction is unnecessarily slow and at times has more in common with a road movie than it does a spy movie. Wally Stott's score is underused and lacking in tension. As Polish seaman Leisser, Christopher Jones' James Dean posturings were mannered even in 1969 and too much of the film seems like an expensive show reel for Jones' undeniable screen presence and propensity for looking iconic in every given situation. As Leisser's handler, Anthony Hopkins (Avery) feels somewhat wasted but manages to convey the complexity of a man in cisis, his growing attachment and attraction to Leisser reveals how little he feels for his wife (Anna Massey)and the utter pointlessness of his job. Ralph Richardson is splendidly uncaring, aloof and bored. The romance between Leisser & the girl (Pia Degermark), whom he picks up on the road and who tries to sway Leisser from his mission, is not only confused but features some spectacuarly risable dialogue that only a sixth former could have considered profound. Whether or not the movie is an accurate representation of the novel, Piedersen's direction seems perversely to avoid the key ingredients of what constitute a good spy movie - intrigue and suspense. Look out for Susan George, Tim West, Ray Mcnally and Michael Robbins (On The Buses) as a homosexual truck driver whose German accent sounds like he spent his formative years in Cardiff.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Dr. M. Lojko on 13 May 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I have seen a good clutch of negative reviews of this film, all of which, I have to say, are misconceived. The director created this film in the true Carreian vein. A brutal and unglamorous world is exposed with fine precision and the right heartbeat. Those who seek the romance and the glamour need to look for another author and cheaper spy stories. This piece of old world cinema is touching and convincing.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Roger Sawyer on 21 Oct. 2013
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
A good old British spy thriller based on a le Carrier novel. Somewhat dated now, but still well worth watching
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By Mario on 15 Mar. 2015
Format: DVD
The first half is impressive in some ways: well-acted, thoughtful cinematography with lots going on. The fight between Hopkins and Jones impressively 'committed'. Richardson strolls through it with his charisma intact. The second half feels less clear or interesting largely because the British knights are absent. However, the are some very impressive shots of what purports to be East Germany. Spain, I read. Worth watching and once again, London is an ever-changing picture: perhaps the most changeable great city and fascinating to place it 'in time'.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By philip adams on 11 Dec. 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Early Le Carre adaptation, far from the best, but fans of the genre and the author will no doubt find something they both like, and dislike.
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Great to see a movie that pairs the early Anthony Hopkins in fine form with a classic work based on the book by the espionage maestro John LeCarre. This movie strips away the glamour of espionage depicted in the Bond movies and shows the pain and suffering of those involved. A master class in acting and screenwriting.
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