Sunday, August 17, 2014

Movies: A Most Wanted Man

(Drivebycuriosity) -  John le Carré is a brand name in the world of espionage-thrillers.  Novels like "The Spy Who Came in from the Cold" described the sophisticated & dangerous work of spies during the cold war between the West and the Sovjet System. His 2008 novel "A Most Wanted Man" is a reflection of the post 9/11 world and the war against terrorism. Director Anton Corbijn adapted the book into a cool movie with the same name (imdb).

An illegal immigrant has arrived in Hamburg, Germany, and attracts a lot attention by German & US intelligence corps. What does the Chechen Muslim want? Is he a terrorist? Does he have accomplices? Le Carré & Corbijn are more interested in the psychological and political aspects than in pure action which makes the film more interesting than the average spy movie.

"A Most Wanted Man" fascinated me thanks to its superb cast, consisting of global movie stars - Philip Seymour Hoffman, Robin Wright, Rachel McAdams & Willem Dafoe - and some of the top German actors  - Nina Hoss & Daniel Brühl. The late Hoffman delivered another superior performance as a shrewd spy and resourceful investigator, a kind of cinematic legacy. His blend of aplomb and diligence was amazing. The adorable Robing Wright ("House of Cards") as elegant but vicious representative of the US interests  and McAdams as a naive-idealistic social worker and lawyer were congenial partners in this game.

I also enjoyed the cinematography, especially the contrast between beautiful shots from Hamburg´s harbor area and the pictures from the dingy red light district (neighborhood St. Pauli).

"A Most Wanted Man" is a mindful and entertaining espionage film and recommended for friends of intelligent contemporary cinema.

PS: As an illustration I used Sigmar Pohlke´s painting "Police Pig" (driveby).

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