- New interviews with author John Le Carre and cinematographer Oswald Morris
- The Secret Center: John Le Carre, a BBC documentary on the author's extraordinary life and work
- Acting in the '60s: Richard Burton, a 1967 interview iwth the BBC's Kenneth Tynan examining the actor's performances and accomplishments
- A booklet featuring a new essay by film critic Michael Sragow
The Spy Who Came in from the Cold
Special Edition, The Criterion Collection
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John Le Carré's acclaimed bestselling novel, about a Cold War spy on one final, dangerous mission, is every bit as precise and ruthless onscreen in this adaptation directed by Martin Ritt. Richard Burton delivers one of his career-defining performances as Alec Leamas, whose hesitant but deeply felt relationship with a beautiful librarian (Claire Bloom) puts what he hopes will be his last assignment, in East Germany, in jeopardy. An intelligent, hard-edged, and even tragic thriller, The Spy Who Came in from the Cold is etched with realism and suffused with genuine political and personal anxiety.
Directed by Martin Ritt (Hud, Sounder, Norma Rae)
Starring Richard Burton (Becket, Who s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Equus)
Starring Claire Bloom (Limelight, Richard III, Crimes and Misdemeanors)
From the novel by John Le Carré (The Russia House, The Tailor of Panama, The Constant Gardener)
SPECIAL EDITION DOUBLE-DISC SET FEATURES:
New, restored high-definition digital transfer
New interviews with author John Le Carré and cinematographer Oswald Morris
The Secret Center: John Le Carré (2000), a BBC documentary on the author s extraordinary life and work
Acting in the '60s: Richard Burton, a 1967 interview with the BBC s Kenneth Tynan examining the actor's performances
Gallery of set designs
PLUS: A booklet featuring a new essay by critic
Michael Sragow and a reprinted interview with Ritt
Tight and engrossing...true to the book and sharply directed. --New York Times
Burton gives one of his best screen performances. --Geoff Andrew, Time Out New York
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Top customer reviews
Director Martin Ritt holds court on how to properly unfold such a story whose plot is based on "plans within plans". This is a movie that needs to be payed attention to in order to be fully appreciated. But if you don't there are still rewards in taking in the dank, black & white, otherworldly images that weld themselves to your consciousness. This film works on several levels, with timeless themes that make the ride worthwhile. Tip: Watch Richard Burton closely. His manner. His facial expressions. He is a master actor whose every move informs. Don't assume he knows the whole story.
One thing that can be revealed without incurring spoilage is that we run into 'George Smiley' in this film. Wasn't Smiley a character animated by Alec Guinness in the popular spy film 'Tinker Taylor Soldier Spy' and the 'Smiley's People' series? Why yes... the novels all these teleplays were based on were written by John le Carré. George Smiley is the author's recurring MI6 spy.
*** I just read the book and just as I thought: Mundt beat the hell out of Leamus. This was conveyed by the look on Burton's face after the frame showing his first "meeting" with Mundt. That look also conveyed to me that Leamus had also been hogged tied--not nice and neat as Leamus was shown in the film with his hands hancuffed in front of him, his nice white shirt and tie still in place, without a speck of blood any place. More gore should have been added to the next appearance of Fiedler, who also was "interviewed" by Mundt. They needed Sam Peckinpah to direct this part of the movie. Then, movie lines would have been around the block!
Executed by Richard Burton, with help from Claire Bloom and Oskar Werner, this drama is set in the cold war era of the 1960s.
MI6 masterfully designs a plan to discredit a certain high ranking Soviet spy operative in a scheme of national betrayal. Richard Burton is dressed in the skin of an MI6 defector and immediately grabbed by Soviet intelligence and lured to the East. If all goes well, the target operative will be eliminated by his own unsuspecting countrymen, but there will be surprises along the way that will leave the viewer anything but disappointed.
Most recent customer reviews
Hot Toasty Rag, July 21, 2017
The Spy Who Came in from the Cold has been heralded as the best Cold War spy movie.Read more