The film is about the hunt for a double agent referred to as the Soviet “mole” in the highest ranks of the British Secret Intelligence Service dubbed the “Circus”. Several senior intelligence officers are under suspicion, and the movie derives its title from the code names given to each of them during the investigation: “Tinker”, “Tailor”, “Soldier”, “Poorman”, and “Beggarman”.
British agent Ricki Tarr (Tom Hardy) finds out that there is a mole within the Circus, and former intelligence officer George Smiley (Gary Oldman), a downtrodden man since his degrading retirement, is secretly rehired by the government to do the hunting. With the help of Tarr’s boss, Peter Guillam (Bendedict Cumberbatch), Smiley begins the quest to uncover the mole among the Circus leadership: Chief Percy Alleline (Toby Jones), Deputy Bill Haydon (Colin Firth),RoyBland (Ciarán Hinds) and Toby Esterhase (David Dencik).
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, directed by Thomas Alfredson, is very compelling and engrossing from start to finish. The casting is terrific, the music is electrifying, the cinematography is superb, and the directing is quite impressive. Comparisons of the 2011 film to that of the 1979 version and the novel are inevitable, but fans of both would surely agree that Alfredson is victorious in his adaptation. Overall, it is a spy movie that you’ll grow to love more and more each time you watch it.