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The Spy Who Came In From The Cold [DVD] 
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The acclaimed adaptation of John Le Carre's novel about an aging British spy who attempts to infiltrate the East German agency. Gri tty and superbly realistic, this is the prototypical Cold War thriller. Richard Burton was nominated for Academy Award for Best Act or.
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Top Customer Reviews
The plot in this movie concerns an attempt by British Intelligence to undermine a dangerous East German Abteilung officer by planting a defector, Leamass, played superbly by Richard Burton, into East Germany. But as the plot unfolds we begin to see the real subtlety and manipulation at play that is charachteristic of Le Carre at his stunning best. If you are interested in this era and this type of film it is obviously the classic of its kind.
One thing I find interesting about the Cold War is that it was largely fought without weapons, and yet, as perfectly illustrated in this movie, even stripped of their weapons, men still found a way to fight a war!!
I owned it on VHS and waited for along time for a region 2 compatible DVD. No extras, but I don't care, it's a work of art which doesn't need embellishing.
Starring Richard Burton in perhaps one of his most impressive roles and co-starring Burton's one-time girlfriend the entrancing Claire Bloom, this movie is a complex, intricately woven movie that keeps one guessing. It starts in Germany and ends in Germany with stops in England and Holland inbetween. Burton plays Alec Leamas, a former head of British intelligence in Berlin who poses as a washed up agent as a means of implanting seeds of doubt about the loyalty of a communist spy in the minds of that spy's superiors. After beating up a grocer he is approached by East German intelligence and persuaded to "defect" to the East. Once there during the debriefing stage he begins to lay subtle clues in the hope that they will be picked up by the authorities, who will then p[iece together the clues and come to the conclusion that one of their star agents is a traitor. Sounds simple enough right?! Well, all is not as it seems and the real motive behind Leamas' ruse is one of those twists you don't see coming until it's too late.
Burton is ably supported by a brilliant supporting cast, from the aforementioned Bloom to Michael Horden as Ashe, a gay communist agent, Sam Wanamaker as Peters, Oskar Werner as the ambitious Fiedler and Robert Hardy as Dick Carlton to name just a few.
Released in 1965, this movie was made at a time when color was available for use, however the makers decided (wisely) to film it in black and white, a decision which really helps build atmosphere and drama.
I recommend this movie to everyone who likes complex plotting and espionage thrillers.
Richard Burton gives an outstanding performance as Leamas, Burton playing the part of a man playing a part. Though we are invited to question where the man ends and the part he is playing begins.. The spy who has just had a failure in Berlin, but who is not ready to come in from the cold. His bosses ask him to stay in the field for one more undercover op, all in gritty but excellent black and white photography. He does what he needs to do to seem `turnable', as part of a scheme his handler has explained will help get rid of one of the top German agents... his journey of false information dissemination becomes one of self discovery as he starts to question just who is being used. His monologue near the end when he releases his true feelings about his profession makes you realize just how great an actor he could be, especially with this sort of deeply troubled and damaged character. Oskar Werner is simply mesmerising as the contact whom Leamas intends to manipulate, and Claire Bloom has a pivotal role that is utterly believable thanks to a note perfect performance that speaks much more than her words do.
It's a simply told, unfussily shot gem full of nuances, with great performances and a compelling story..Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I have read the Spy and seen the film twice and still wonder if Mundt was a real "Double Agent". Read morePublished 24 days ago by Anthony P. Aqthawes
The Spy Who Came in from the Cold is a 1963 Cold War espionage novel by author John le Carré. Read morePublished 26 days ago by Sussman
fan of richard burton ..played his part well .enjoyed watching the film which i saw a long time ago ..which is in black and white .. Read morePublished 1 month ago by rose
It's aged badly. Atmospheric camerawork from Ossie Morris gets the story down on celluloid but this is a contender for a updated version. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Stuart King
Cold War grim reality. No sixties glamour here. Richard Burton and Claire Bloom are pawns in a deadly game of espionage.Published 3 months ago by Robert Malcolm