User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 351 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 64 out of 351

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  1. Dec 12, 2011
    Just saw a screening of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy. Stunned to read that reviews are good. Wait until real people see this, and not reviewers who are afraid to call this like it is, one of the most confusing and convoluted movies I have ever seen. I was in a theater of industry members and the reaction could not have been more tepid. There was a Q&A afterwards and when asked if this was better than the Alec Guiness version the answer over and over was, NO! The direction and the editing is a jumbled mess. Timelines, story lines, characters, all muddled. Gary Oldman plays his part well, I lay this mess at the feet of the director and his editor. A final note, I absolutely adore spy movies, I devoured every book every written about the Cold War, this should have been right up my alley. VERDICT: Gutter Ball Expand
  2. Dec 13, 2011
    The movie is totally incomprehensible, dull and uninvolving. It jumps forward and backward in time at random, and Gary Oldman does an Alec Guiness impression. I don't know what movie the critics saw, but this is a total snooze.
  3. Jan 7, 2012
    I have to chuckle sometimes at professional critics and their rave reviews. For the average moviegoer who is plunking down $10 for a ticket and another $13 or so for popcorn and a soda, it's all about the entertainment value. To this end, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy rates a solid zero with an exclamation point. It's much akin to having a book on tape acted out on screen. The words simply drone on. The characters are unsympathetic and the story is meandering. Honestly, towards the end, you're not even really sure if you are at the end of the movie or not. If you like spy thrillers, this isn't for you. The only thrills here are seeing the closing credits and grabbing a refill on your popcorn. Make sure you go to a theater with comfy high-back seats so you will be able to easily recline your weary head as this movie plods along. Yes, there's lots of words in the script and lots and lots of "acting moments" for Gary Oldman and Mr. Awards Bait, Colin Firth. But, for those of us looking for good old-fashioned movie magic, it's best to move along. There isn't anything to see here, folks. Nothing at all. I was impressed that there were lots of British folks in this film. They have impeccable enunciation. I stared at the ceiling of the theater a few times, too, that's how engrossing this bore-fest was. The couple beside me summed it up best when they said, 'What the heck did we just pay for?" as they left the theater. Ditto. Expand
  4. Dec 31, 2011
    Incomprehensible, that says it all. Some reviewers commented about the jumbled timeline. Here's how bad it was: I couldn't tell when it was jumbled or not! And I'm someone who drank in Memento. My partner and I consider ourselves fairly intellectual and sophisticated movie-goers, we do not require cheap thrills, the straw-man that some of this movie's defenders put up. In the end, the mole is revealed, but WHO CARES?!?!?! The acting is good? Heck, I think lots of people can look grim grim grim. There seems to be a subset of fans out there who genuinely like this movie, but chances are very high that you are not in that teeny tiny group. I think it's probably a group of people who love any sort of cold war spy movie. If that's you, by all means, feed this turducken. Expand
  5. Jan 7, 2012
    I just finished watching Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, and I am stunned at how highly this film was rated by critics. I went into the film with no prior knowledge of its plot; I haven't read the book, nor have I seen any of its previous filmed versions. And after watching it, I still barely know what happens. It is almost laughably confusing. The editing of the film is disastrous. The fact that much of the film consists of flashbacks adds to the confusion. The film gives no visual clues to differentiate the past and the present. There are way too many characters to keep track of, and half of them are of no consequence to the plot. I also think the film should be subtitled for American viewers since most of the dialogue is spoken in such a thick British accent it is incomprehensible. And on top of all this, the film is incredibly dull and boring. The thinking for this film was "Let's take a whole bunch of big-name British actors... Colin Firth, Gary Oldman... write a confusing and boring screenplay and shoot the film in dull, greenish colors. The critics will eat it up." Well, the critics have apparently been duped into thinking Tinker Tailor is praiseworthy, but I found it about as entertaining and visually interesting as a bowl of split pea soup. Expand
  6. Jan 19, 2012
    Bad. Do not go... My husband and I were totally misled by the critics reviews. We generally enjoy insightful and intelligent films; we do not need things to explode and to view a series of chase scenes to find a film rewarding. We were both tremendously disappointed in this film. It is slow, convoluted, and just down right boring. I kept watching waiting to see what the critics saw and did not understand the ratings whatsoever. Generally, if you see a film with high ratings you at least "get" why it was rated that way. Not this one! It is bad. Do not go. Expand
  7. Jan 14, 2012
    It is quite obvious that this movie does not lend itself to middle ground reviews; most reviewers seem to either love it or hate it. I grew up with the books and movies of the cold war era, usually enjoy the subtle play with hints and clues, value character development at times when more often than not CGI takes center stage, and certainly have no problems with slower paced material. TTSS should have been a real treat but unfortunately it wasn't. Trying to apply some common sense here the movie under delivers in such a variety of ways that it beggars belief. The plot is confused and unintelligible and, worst of all, leaves you wondering after 20 minutes why anyone should care about anything anymore. There are scenes with no apparent link or connection to the storyline (George swimming; the boy with the blue spectacles). Taken, Gary Oldman's low key acting is strangely fascinating at first but that effect wears off quickly. The otherwise great cast is completely wasted; take Ciarán Hinds who has what, a combined 10 min? And expect no compensation for the boredom the director unleashes on its audience as the production value of this movie is at the lowest possible end. Lighting and sound are miserable, and the photography as grainy as a super-8 amateur film. If that was intended to somehow recreate the seventies look and feel, sorry, I don't buy it. Watching TTSS has been two hours of real torture, and I can't remember any other example where critics reviews and audience responses diverge so much. A real shame. Collapse
  8. Feb 2, 2012
    Quite possibly the worst movie ever made. Left the theater after an hour of utter crap. Anyone who claims to understand the garbage spewed throughout this movie was either an actual spy, or is most definitely lying. Just more arsty b.s. that the critics claim to be able to "get." compelling. Total crap.
  9. Jan 8, 2012
    This is one huge disappointing film, from beginning to end. The British in their endless fascination in their own history have, thanks to a famous novelist, now have a film about a group of their own Cold War counterintelligence agents, who dislike and mistrust each other, find American counterintelligence a threat, and talk about finding worthy Russian counterintelligence. But all these agents, these people, do is talk quietly, sneer at each other, and so on. There are too many one-on-one scenes where the conversations are dull, often meaningless, since nothing appears to come of them. Maybe this is really the fodder of a stage play - a drama centered on one-on-one dialogue. This film got good reviews, bad box office, and now I understand the bad box office. But what about the film critics who liked this? Why are their views so frequently so different than those of us who pay big bucks to go to multiplexes? Expand
  10. Jan 7, 2012
    While I wanted to like Tinker Tailor, this is a movie I just couldn't get into. For starters, the pace is astonishingly slow. There are scenes that are shown that seem to have no connection to the plot of the movie. The plot is more complex than it needed to be. My biggest problem with the movie though is the lack of anything memorable. The acting is good, the direction is great, and the music suits the movie, but nothing stands out that you will remember in 6 months. Not one scene will stick with you. The characters are not interesting or unique from each other. There may not have been one joke in the movie and there was not one scene that had emotion in it. The mystery through the movie doesn't deliver the payoff and I personally thought Dragon Tattoo had a much more interesting "whodunit" mystery in it's story. After 20 minutes, I started counting how many Harry Potter actors I could spot. I started thinking "There's Tom Hardy, he will do an awesome job in Dark Knight Rises", and "Oh ok so thats the new villain in Star Trek 2, he seems like he will do a good job". I guess the point I am making is that I simply didn't get it and I am saying that because there's a good chance you may not get it either. There may be a target audience for this film, and clearly the critics ate this movie up, but it disappointed for me and the four people I went with. Also, judging by the awkward and silent reaction of other people in the theater we weren't the only ones, despite the great actors and potential. Expand
  11. Jan 7, 2012
    The two points I'm giving this film are for the acting. Unfortunately the great actors are a complete waste in this convoluted mess. I was tortured throughout this film, constantly looking at my watch wondering when it would end. I am stunned the critics are giving this film good reviews. jfa weiu a;fj pqeijua ak;ajf [ a;kdfj a j. If you understood that previous sentence then you will enjoy this film. As people left the theater all you could hear was "wow that was hard to follow", or "I didn't understand any of that movie". What is the point of making a movie so incredibly difficult to follow? It certainly isn't entertainment. I know the point of the film is they are trying to find out who the mole is, but how they found out I couldn't tell you, nor did I care. If I wasn't there with a friend I may have walked out on the film at the halfway point. I had some difficulty with the English accents at times as well which added to the confusion. Expand
  12. Feb 4, 2012
    Are you kidding me? I sat thru the whole film wondering when I was going to "get" it. Did I miss something? The flash-backs helped some but there were huge holes in the story. I had never read the series so it is obvious that one needs to do that in order to figure out what is going on in the film. At times I was yawning...and I even had had a double espresso and chocolate before I went in! Even Roger Ebert thought it was confusing. Expand
  13. Jan 15, 2012
    Before you see this movie, you need to ask yourself if you are an avid fan of the History channel. Because this Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy would be a great fit for the History channel, if the History channel was dull, boring, and uninspired. Tinker belongs as a feature movie in The Invention of Lying, which showed clips of this genre as spoofs to show how dry filmmaking would be without invention. Tinker has now soundly proven the point.

    I am not one who needs to be hit over the head to "get it". I like films that drops subtle clues. But Tinker's subtlety was lost on me, and I felt I needed to be hit over the head if only to put a merciful end to the two longest hours of my life. The film's greatest weakness was time discontinuity, back and forth, over and over, using the same actors, who were no younger as they went back in time. The viewer is forced to continually be looking for the time-sense of each scene, so there was little time, or desire, to sort out the intended puzzle. If you like puzzles, you may very well like this film, but I would advise, instead, that you spend your two hours poring over the 10,000 piece puzzle on your card table. You will have more fun and excitement!
  14. Dec 18, 2011
    I finally registered for an account to leave this review - I think that says something I consider myself and my significant other to be relatively intelligent, we read the new yorker regularly, been published in the new york times, graduated in the top 2% of my class... --> This movie is borderline incomprehensible to those who have not read the book. I appreciate the quality of the direction, production, etc. but my general view is that movies which are both based on an involved book and try to compress the story into 2 hours tend to come across as unintelligible to those who have not read the book. The Lord of the Rings trilogy is another example (I've never met anyone who hasn't read the book and enjoyed the film except for those individuals who were there solely to enjoy the CGI and would never have the patience to a read a book >200 pages). Expand
  15. Jan 7, 2012
    This movie is impossible to follow. Half the theater erupted in boos at the end of the movie and i believe the other half just didn't want to waste another split second of their time thinking about this horrible movie. I will never trust a critically acclaimed film again. Perhaps if you've read this book and know everything about it prior to going to the movie it might be good but as a stand alone film it doesn't make sense. Expand
  16. Jan 18, 2012
    The start of this movie had me excited at the prospect of a cleverly scripted, beautifully filmed remake of a BBC classic but once into it, the feeling of disappointment started to overwhelm me. With an all start cast, the film never really connects, and is disjointed on all levels. Acting masterclasses from Oldman and Hurt do nothing but leave you wondering why such an all star cast doesn't deliver. The characters are never developed enough for anyone to take interest in this messy remake. Two hours were never going to do this movie justice, and just what the critics were marking this on is beyond me. Great acting at times, cinematography is brilliant, editing leaves alot to be desired, confusing plot...definitely a movie for DVD. Sorry! Expand
  17. Jan 18, 2012
    Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy is a movie that started with a good book and turned it into a convoluted, confusing movie not worth your time or money. The flashbacks are confusing. The attempt to make an arts movie only distracts from the story.
  18. BKM
    Mar 24, 2012
    The cast is superb, the screenplay intelligent and the tone of the film is perfect. Yet you have to practically be a counter agent yourself in order to make any sense of the nearly incomprehensible plot and when you're on the outside looking in, the action is slowed down to a snail's pace.
  19. Apr 14, 2012
    This movie is perfect example of why no one respects movie critics. This was one of the most boring movies I have ever watched in my entire life. I only rented it because it got an 85 on Metacritic, but I definitely am losing my trust in said critics. Why they insist giving high ratings to movies where NOTHING HAPPENS (this movie and A Serious Man, for example) is beyond me. I think they should get real jobs. Expand
  20. Jan 7, 2012
    This big-screen adaptation of the le Carre novel is not like most modern spy flicks: There are no chases, fights or shocking twists. It revolves around an English spy organization in the 70s and the search for a Russian mole in the higher ranks. Gary Oldman heads the impressive cast as the man hired to find the culprit. The complex machinations are carried out methodically, which means very slowly. Much of what happens, suspicious glances, swiping folders and other dull dealings, is simply confusing (guess it helps to read the novel). When the truth is revealed, it's really no big surprise, making the movie even more of a letdown. Expand
  21. Mar 2, 2012
    Stinker, Failure, Loser, Die. Critics who mistake the withdrawn acting and glacial plotting for intelligence, class, realism and authenticity are pretentious **** This is one of the most dull and passionless films ever made. People like George Smiley and these awful spies may exist, but they are human vacuum cleaners, sucking up all the oxygen around them. Tomas Alfredson, who made the chilly Swedish vampire movie Let The Right One In (much more original than this tosh) allows the frost to harden throughout this icy film. What a non-performance from Gary Oldman, who only 'ehts, dear boy' in a drunken scene with the flaming Benedict Cumberbatch, his hair all sprayed gold ('Will anyone think I'm gay?). Yet I am in a minority - the Brits have given this dross a 'Best British film' and Oldman has been nominated for a Best Actor Oscar. This speaks volumes for film critics who mistake this class ridden, awful, dense and dull type of film for one that is complex, adult, well acted, brilliantly written, etc. It isn't any of these good things. There is nobody to like in this film, no human to empathise with, no thrills or excitement, no great lines, no great message - just 127 minutes that unravel in front of your eyes. I give it 20% for the director (he makes what he can out of the dull script and the deliberate non-performances) and for the ending which sees Colin Firth as the bad guy, thank God. Did I say I didn't like it enough? Expand
  22. Jan 6, 2012
    Worst movie ever! I agree the other intelligent people who reviewed it with a 0 or 1, I was bored to death and refuse to believe that the reviewers found this movie excellent. I too wonder if we saw the same movie
  23. Jan 7, 2012
    What's that saying about smelling the monkey poop? The critics are living in their own little world. This movie is a mess...perhaps a technical marvel on many levels, but a bore to anyone with half a brain. Do not waste a dime on this terrible movie.
  24. Jan 10, 2012
    A confusing shamble. If you took all the scenes from this movie, put them in a hat and pulled them out randomly, you would get the same movie. The only reason I give it a 1 was for the suspense that something interesting would happen and the shock that it didn't.
  25. Feb 14, 2012
    I learned a lesson (again) about the reviews of critics. Never again will I base my movie going decisions on them. . Did we watch the same movie? I think I fell asleep but I'm not quite sure. Why? For the moments I was awake, I was comatose. If you go to see this movie, bring a big cup of coffee with you.
  26. Feb 12, 2012
    It seems that this is another movie, like Sideways, where critics are a lot more enthusiastic than the general audience.

    The acting was very good. The cinematography was great, it captured the era extremely well. However the plot was so convoluted, and it dragged in so many places that I ended up hating the movie. If I had gone to the movie alone I would have walked out, and I don't
    recall wanting to do that in a movie ever before. Expand
  27. Jan 16, 2012
    I should have known what I was getting into. Years ago I attempted to read Le Carre's highly acclaimed novel and surrendered to it half way through; it was too complex for me. Character names were a mishmash, the chronology was all out of sorts, and I found myself feeling as if I were lost at sea. Perhaps it was above my head, meant for a more erudite crowd. Whether the fault lay on my end or Le Carre's, I didn't really care. I had too many good books waiting on my shelf to waste time on something that bored me to tears. A decade later, I opened up my newspaper and found myself reacquainted with TTSS; truth be told, I hadn't thought about it since I dejectedly returned my book to the library all those years ago. I was intrigued. The names tacked on the brilliantly designed full page ad looked like an Oscar party guest list and Thomas Alfredson's last film, Let the Right One In, a deliciously spooky vampire flick, indicated to me that someone at least halfway decent was sitting in the director's chair. Besides, movies aren't necessarily carbon copies of their source material. A muddled, confusing novel might find redemption on the big screen if handled properly. The basic premise of TTSS is extremely compelling: a mole has burrowed his way into the upper echelons of a British intelligence agency. Deceit. Treachery. Violence. A timeless, endlessly entertaining combination. I was suckered all over again. Why I thought the film would be any better than the book baffles me. It's got all the endless of "endlessly entertaining", and none of the entertainment. I sat through the entire movie but would have quit halfway through, as I did the book, were it not for my company. I didn't want to seem rude, as my date apparently loved it. Maybe she had a crush on Gary Oldman. Whatever her highly questionable motives might be, I don't really care, as I will not be asking her for a second date. This movie is boring and hopelessly complex- a disastrous combination. If something exciting happened every once and while, maybe a chair being knocked over or Gary Oldman actually showing some enthusiasm, anything, anything at all, I could forgive the convolution of the story. But they give us nothing. There are only two- count it- TWO shots fired in the entire (what seemed like) thirteen hour running time, and one of those comes in the last three minutes. A spy movie with only two gunshots? Unforgivable. For comparison, imagine if 99% of Saving Private Ryan consisted of Eisenhower and company planning out the D-Day invasion- drawing maps, calculating logistics, playing with action figures, wiping their arses, and in the last two minutes, we see Tom Hanks and his squad approach Omaha Beach and vaporize in front of our eyes when an artillery shell bullseyes their LVT. The end. That's TTSS in a nutshell for ya. I found myself lost at sea yet again. At the end of the movie, I still didn't know any of the character's motivations, let alone half of their names, who the villain was, or why anything happened to anybody. It's almost as if we were dropped into the film midway without so much as an introduction, and expected to follow along. I felt like it was my first day at work at a job I was hopelessly under-qualified for. At thirty minutes, I was checking my watch. At an hour and a half I was nearly comatose. Had the movie stretched past two and a half hours, I would have left the theater in a body bag. The three was only awarded because the film was technically superb. The acting was, as expected, superb and the setting- dreary, gray, and perpetually damp 1960's England- was fittingly depressing and moody. If this was trimmed down to four minutes and set to a gloomy Radiohead song about the Cold War, it would have been the best damn music video ever made. Unfortunately, it's a movie, and movies actually require some semblance of a story to entertain most people. Damn shame. Expand
  28. Apr 14, 2012
    I saw a SAG screening of this that was followed by a Q&A with one of its stars. Amazingly, despite his presence in the theater, a lot of people couldn't sit through the entirety of the film. The guy sitting next to me was with his girlfriend, and opted to leave and meet up with her afterwards. And these are all working actors who appreciate a good performance even if its attached to a bad script. The movie is really difficult to follow and the characters are very hard to develop an attachment to. This is probably because the movie is an overstuffed adaptation of a much larger work. They tried to fit in too many story lines and to attach too many big name actors. The end effect is that the movie lacks the most important and basic ingredient to a successful feature: a likeable protagonist who we can root for in an understandable goal. It doesn't help that Gary Oldman chose to play Smiley, who would most likely serve as our protagonist, without any emotional reaction to the things he experiences. Another case of no single critic wanting to go out on a ledge against a great cast and director. So they all fall in line to praise a very bad piece of work that no one will remember at all in ten years. Expand
  29. Feb 14, 2012
    After so many others reviews on here already, I will keep mine short - Actually 1 word = RUBBISH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  30. Mar 24, 2012
    Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy is so messed up in so many ways. Gary oldman was terrible. the movie's pace is slower than a slug. boring isn't enough to describe how creative the film was. i haven't fallen asleep in a film in more than 6 years. this movie barely escaped from being added to the list.
  31. Jun 4, 2012
    This movie should have been fantastic. Good or great actors everywhere, doing a good job with what they have... the material is there... I was so excited for this but it's just not put together in any way that is remotely interesting. Yes, I get that I'm supposed to be in the dark with the plot - surprises will come in a spy thriller, but you can't make me watch an entire movie of mopey, sad, slow moving people awash in a world of gray, devoid of any fun, thrills, or excitement. It's just to down, too depressed to be enjoyable. Expand
  32. Feb 6, 2012
    Tinker Tailor Soldier Tin-Tin or whatever the movie is called clearly delivers the message that this is Tomas Alfredson's love letter to the $5 DVD bargain bin.
  33. Mar 1, 2012
    Maybe it was my fault, but I understand nothing, absolutely nothing of this movie, and when finished left with a big question mark in my head. I had hopes it was a great movie but I ended up totally disappointed.
  34. Jan 7, 2012
    I really wanted to love this film, since I heard it might be nominated for best picture. The film's story is too jumbled and either assumes or does a poor job of explaining important elements or themes such as Control, Circus, and Wichcraft. I had to query wikipedia to read the summary of the film to understand what I had just viewed and said elements. I never read the book; I came in with a blank slate to this film. And I feel, perhaps, this film was best catered to those who are of British citizenry or read the book, or those who enjoy watching a film multiple times to understand the plot. It felt like it was the archetypical art film, something like you'd see at a museum or art gallery, where you don't quite understand it but you must appreciate it because it's highly well-regarded by others with higher IQ's than your own. To steal a British term, I think that's pure rubbish. I enjoy watching ballet, Opera, international travel, and thought-provoking films as much as the next person. I reside in New York and consider myself a New Yorker, but I am a European, as well. I say that because the reaction from those who immensely enjoyed this film shouldn't be "it's because you're not intelligent" or "it's because you're an ignorant American". Having said all that, I don't think the film was poor. I feel the acting, seriousness, and realism of the movie played well and I do feel I was watching something special. But I feel the film would have benefited from some much-needed explanations. Most of the audience was baffled. I got a top-down understanding of the film, but I wanted an deep intimate experience. Expand
  35. Oct 14, 2012
    While this movie had strong acting, and was beautifully directed, and the storyline could have been extremely compelling, and the movie overall could have had quite a strong impact with all of the components it had, but the way it was handled in the script was atrocious. It was completely unnecessary to have the story out of order. Someone said you have to figure out what scene is where by Gary Oldman's glasses. How are we supposed to figure that out? All it did was make it more confusing, giving the impression that it was actually more intelligent than it was. If there was something they figured out that was contrary to what they thought in another scene, you wouldn't know if the first piece of information was correct, or the second, because you wouldn't know what the real order of the story is. It's not like Pulp Fiction, Memento, or Blue Valentine, where it's out of order, but you can still follow it, or that there's actually some structure or method to it being out of order. This is just random. Not to mention, in those movies, the order they were in added something to the movie. This couldn't have added anything at all, except for confusion. You have to watch it a couple of times and piece it together yourself. If you confuse the audience, it hinders the emotional impact the viewer could have had, should they have understood the story the first time. By the third view, they might understand the story in order to be emotionally effected by it, but by then they already have seen the emotional moments, and they know they're coming. It's a complete waste of a solid storyline, strong directing, and powerful acting. I hope if you see it, and you are confused, as you will be, you don't try to walk out of the theater claiming how brilliant it was, because you really won't know, since you won't really know the story. Maybe after you've seen it enough times to piece it together, so that you can actually understand what the story is, then you can say that. If they did it in order, then the story would've been just as strong, but possible to understand, and therefore it would've had the initial impact it could have had. Expand
  36. Jan 28, 2012
    i admire the 70s looking film and ambience and music...but in the age of the BOURNE supremecy, this is flat out SLOW....slow slow slow slow slow slow slow
  37. Feb 6, 2012
    I really don't know what Alfredson was trying to accomplish with this movie because it is neither smart or complex; It's boring, uneventful, and totally confusing. Trying to be cerebral is one thing. Totally leaving your audience in the dust is another. And I say this admitting that I loved Let the Right one in - a beautiful movie. This on the other hand is self conceited mumbo jumbo.
  38. Sep 21, 2012
    Omg, are we all watching the same film ?! This was horrible, just horrible. The pacing is glacial, the characters are dull and lifeless, the actors are all old, washed up B- and C-players, the soundtrack and dull visuals are designed to bring on sleep - quickly. What a terrible waste of story telling. It portrays English society as dull, boring, archaic, just ugh. I can't recommend this for any reason at all. Expand
  39. Jun 3, 2012
    Yeah I actually gave up on this movie. If you like it than you are a liar. I don't think the director and producer understand the story. It was so bad I registered here just to give it a 0. Truly one of the worst movies of all time. I saw random people walking behind windows in the movie like Blair-witch and I am not sure if they knew if they were part of the movie or not.
  40. Aug 17, 2012
    in reality this movie is just plain confusing. it starts off ok, but suddenly there are a number of random event and it becomes incredibly hard to follow whats going on. the only thing that somewhat saves this movie are its actors. Gary Oldman, John Hurt, Colin Firth, Toby Jones, and Mark Strong all give great performance as usual. but that doesnt completely save a movie when their performances cant tell you whats going on. From what ive heard, this is a book-adapted movie. apparently people who've read the book were able to enjoy it. but if not, then its not worth it. try a different movie unless youve read the book. Expand
  41. Mar 31, 2013
    I probably shouldn't review this since I slept through half the movie... then again I wasn't tired, it really did put me to sleep, it was so effing boring and I cared nothing for the characters, the plot didn't captivate me in the slightest. When the movie was over, there was an uproar through the audience complaining about just how awful it was. When I went to use the restroom complete strangers were exchanging stories about what points they nodded off and woke up and fell back asleep to. Not one person had anything good to say about it. And yet, critics have nothing but the best things to say about it. It doesn't take a genius to figure out what happened. They made a movie so high brow critics were too intimidated to say anything negative about it. Expand
  42. Dec 18, 2013
    Way too slow-paced for mid-twenties people to enjoy. My friends and I sat bored out of our minds through most of this movie. A couple interesting scenes, with good acting, but overall a lot of emphasis on watching characters walking down streets.
  43. Mar 16, 2014
    Critics, you had one job. One job. To help us avoid movies like these. This movie is a painful reminder of why the critics are sometimes dead wrong.

    There is no way anyone genuinely enjoyed this movie without having read the book. It is utterly bewildering, incomprehensible, and while it has great acting, an extremely convoluted plot. You cannot condense a story of this complexity
    into two hours. It simply did not work. At all. If you have read the book, perhaps you will enjoy it. If you have not, avoid at all costs. Save two hours of your life. Expand

Universal acclaim - based on 42 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 40 out of 42
  2. Negative: 0 out of 42
  1. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    Jan 7, 2012
    All of the pieces fall into place by the third act -- or most of them, anyway. But Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy is such a cold, unemotional film that getting there is a chore, muting the payoff.
  2. Reviewed by: Connie Ogle
    Jan 7, 2012
    Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy is the anti-Bourne of espionage movies, a deliberate, cerebral, grim and utterly absorbing film that makes covert operations appear as unsexy as the Bourne films made them seem fast-paced and thrilling.
  3. Reviewed by: Lawrence Toppman
    Jan 5, 2012
    The film requires close attention, especially while it jumps back and forth in time for the first half-hour, but all the pieces lock into place tightly by the end.