Wednesday, 6 August 2014

A MOST WANTED MAN

A Chechen Muslim illegally immigrates to Hamburg, where he gets caught in the international war on terror.

I've seen this movie twice, now, and loved it both times. Philip Seymour Hoffman is brilliant in his last movie role. The rest of the cast is also excellent in this slow-burn spy thriller based on a John La Carre novel. The plot is very contemporary with dialogue that is witty and spare. It's the sort of movie you need to watch carefully and quietly so you can concentrate on the various characters and their relationships. Even though it runs at just over two hours, it is never boring with characters developed carefully and a complex plot that unfolds slowly enough to think about what is happening. The German accents were very well done and seemed completely natural. The ambiguous ethical dilemmas are provocative and refuse to lend themselves to black-and-white analysis. For me, an almost perfect spy movie - diminished, just slightly, by a couple of cliched behaviours on the part of the spies. Very satisfying, indeed!

****1/2

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