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Just because the CIA accidentally killed two KGB spies, the Russians want to kill two American agents. Donald Sutherland and Elliott Gould are nominated.
Originally called Wet Stuff, secret agent slang for blood, the studio re-titled S*P*Y*S to capitalize on the success of Robert Altman's M*A*S*H. It turned out to be a move that did more harm than good, as Irvin Kershner's Cold War spoof was deemed the inferior product. Its an accurate assessment. To be fair, though, Kershner (The Empire Strikes Back) never intended to produce a similar movie. In their second team effort, Elliot Gould and Donald Sutherland play Griff and Brulard, CIA operatives stationed in Paris. When their plan to facilitate the defection of a Russian gymnast goes awry, they shack up with sexy anarchist Sybil (Zouzou from Eric Rohmer's Love in the Afternoon). In their bumbling attempts to evade the KGB and their own agency, however, the laid-back Griff and tightly-wound Brulard end up hightailing it to London, leading to some mildly amusing automotive action, but little genuine excitement. The rangy duo works well together, but no amount of chemistry can make up for the confusing script and overly busy score (provided by the usually reliable Jerry Goldsmith). Extras include an informative featurette with Gould, Kershner and producers Irwin Winkler and Robert Chartoff, and The Road of a Hundred Days, a U.S. Information Service documentary on which Kershner served as cameraman. This sympathetic look at an isolated Greek village, circa the 1950s, has nothing to do with S*P*Y*S, but completists may find the film of interest, and it certainly make more sense than the main feature. --Kathleen C. Fennessy
- Inside S*P*Y*S Featurette
- The Road of a Hundred Days: U.S. Government Documentary by Irvin Kershner
- Original Theatrical Trailer
- Still Gallery
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