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Spy Game

IT SEEMS no-one wanted to come up against Harry Potter this week.

Spy Game

IT SEEMS no-one wanted to come up against Harry Potter this week. Spy Game is the only attempt to steal some of the audience.

It might just work as Spy Game audiences are not quite the same as Harry Potter's. Just a glance as the two stars might suggest that this is a movie for adult - or, at least, slightly grown-up - audiences.

Redford is seen very little these days, most recently behind the camera as director rather than in front of it.

But in Spy Game he turns in a pretty impressive performance.

He plays CIA man Nathan Muir who has been around the world with his sidekick Tom Bishop (Brad Pitt) to various hotspots, ranging from Vietnam and Berlin to Beirut.

The team breaks up thanks to a woman - aid worker Catherine McCormack - and they go their separate ways.

Some time later, just at Redford is planning his retirement (yes, it's that old plotline), he discovers that his ex-chum is in a Chinese prison, arrested for attempting to smuggle someone out of the country.

The sentence is death - and within 24 hours.

Pitt's bosses think it's not worth rescuing him because of the political implications so Redford plans the job himself.

He's not only facing the Chinese but CIA operative Charles Harker, played by a scheming Stephen Dillane.

It's all pretty edge-of-the-seat stuff with much of the film played in flashback.

British director Tony Scott does a neat job on the film, keeping everything tense and getting some strong performances from his principals.

The storyline is quite complicated and some might find it not always easy to follow, a bit like Le Carre's television series Tinker, Tailor.

But if you get into it, it takes a fascinating hold.

Redford plays his role in a laid-back fashion, suggesting rather than displaying emotion. And Pitt is likely to keep his female fans happy with his all-action performance.

Above all it is the story which will keep espionage fans happy with a feeling that they are watching events that might have happened - even if they never did.


David Holmes
Chief News Reporter
David Norbury
Mike Fuller
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