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  • kosmasp20 February 2017
    Sometimes you get into a situation without really doing anything. And then you have to ask yourself where to go from there. Something like this happens to Ewan McGregors character. Someone with a past, but also someone with morals. And someone who seems to be struggling with his life, so he may be welcoming whatever gets thrown at him.

    This is based on a novel which I haven't read, so I can't compare those two. I can tell you that the movie is more than suspenseful enough and it seems very much rooted in reality (of course heightened at certain points of the story). There are many obstacles and you may see a lot of things coming before they happen, but the movie is played very well and is more than decent enough to enjoy
  • I enjoy John Le Carre, but none of the adaptations of his books have really blown me away. I am happy to say that I was pleasantly surprised by this movie. I came into this movie without many expectations, as I have not read the book and I hadn't heard anything about the movie.

    Ewan McGregor and Stellan Skarsgård star as a British professor and a Russian mobster respectively, and both give great performances, especially Skarsgård, who plays a man who you know is a bad person, but you can't help but like. Naomie Harris and Damian Lewis also feature, and while both are good in their roles, I felt like Harris, who plays McGregor's wife, wasn't given much to do.

    I really enjoyed the cinematography, and you could tell that Anthony Dod Mantle worked hard to make sure every shot was interesting even when what was going on in the shot was pretty basic.

    The story is nothing you haven't seen before, but I found myself really captured by the great acting and interesting dialogue.

    B+
  • dvc515915 July 2016
    On any other day, a British espionage thriller would make for a good change of pace from the summer blockbuster season. Based off a John le Carré novel, and it makes it even more intriguing, seeing that the master of spy fiction that brought us "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy" and "The Spy that Came In from the Cold" is still up and sprightly, churning out novel after novel like it was nothing. I guess the secret to longevity is indeed to keep on working on your passion.

    Now comes another film adaptation of his work – this time with actors of caliber (Ewan McGregor and Stellan Skarsgard, among others) and double the predictability. I have not read Le Carré's original source material, but my guess is it will be far more intriguing than what was presented here.

    The film, telling the tale of how two ordinary British citizens (McGregor and Naomie Harris) naively help out a turncoat Russian mob enforcer (Skarsgard) and getting in the crosshairs of a ruthless MI6 agent (Damien Lewis) in the process, ticks the right boxes, and nothing more. It becomes an engrossing watch throughout, where characters scheme and plot while other innocents are naively caught in the crossfire.

    Everything is fine and dandy – technically well-made and paced, the performances are spot-on and the story is a good tried-and-tested formula, though post-Brexit it seems unfortunately dated already, and the dialogue relies too much on the four-letter word, a jarring contrast a from Le Carré's usual classiness. The key word here is 'perfunctory'. It functions, and nothing more. Might be good with a cup of hot afternoon tea.
  • As a Le Carre fan, it is fair to say that the film made a reasonable attempt of faithfully representing the book, although there were a few changes to the story. The problem with the film is that the book wasn't that brilliant to start off with and with the exception of Stellan Skarsgård (who played Dima)the other actors did not seem to have much belief in the characters they played. Saying that, it is possible for a film to be an improvement on the book and maybe misplaced deference to the author got in the way of the director and actors attempting to make the story more credible and interesting.

    Perry was too 'nice' so when he played a 'knight in shining armour' on a couple of occasions, it was slightly confusing. Damian Lewis's performance (who played Hector of MI6) verged on the embarrassing as he portrayed him as a bumbling upper class twit which I am sure is not the character trait of MI6 operatives.

    Overall, the film was watchable, but disappointing, especially after viewing the 'Night Manager' recently on television.
  • I usually love John Le Carre's books, but I didn't think much of Our Kind of Traitor at all. In fact it left me with almost no memory of the story except a vague outline, which was very handy when it came to watching the film. I enjoyed the screen version much more. The adaptation is good, the action was paced far better than the novel, and the acting was excellent. Stellan Skarsgaad was wonderful as Dima - he managed, I thought, to make the character sympathetic without ever losing his menace. Damian Lewis was also very good. I don't especially care for Ewan MacGregor, but I thought he did well in this. I had last seen Khalid Abdalla, who played Luke, in the role of an Islamic terrorist in 'Spooks', and I think Susanne White made an excellent choice of having him play an MI-6 officer; while I know nothing about who staffs what in Vauxhall Cross, I would imagine it's much more multi-ethnic than it used to be. Lastly, the little cameo by John Le Carre himself was a nice touch.

    As to how close to the reality the story line is ... I suspect much more so than many people might like to think!
  • Not the best big-screen adaptation of a John LeCarre novel but even a second-rate LeCarre offers its pleasures. The plot of "Our Kind of Traitor" may be a tad far-fetched but then the plots of most good spy yarns often are. The Cold War having ended it's the Russian Mafia who take centre-stage here and as the Russian oligarch who wants to defect Stellan Skarsgard is one of the best things in the picture. Indeed, it's well cast throughout, (Damian Lewis is particularly good as a cynical MI6 operative), and typically there is some nice location work nicely shot by DoP Anthony Dod Mantle. If the director Sussana White doesn't do anything particularly innovative with the material at least she doesn't muck things up. Minor, then, but also surprisingly entertaining, too.
  • John le Carré does not exist. "John the Square" (as understood in French) is the pen name of British author David Cornwell. For those who don't know who he is, Cornwell is a former member of Great Britain's Security Service and, later, his country's Secret Intelligence Service (perhaps better known as MI5 and MI6, respectively). He left the spy game in 1964 to pursue his burgeoning career as a writer of espionage novels. Now, if none of this sounds familiar, maybe these titles will: "The Tailor of Panama", "The Constant Gardener", "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy", "A Most Wanted Man". These are his novels which made it to the big screen just since the beginning of this century and have attracted the participation of actors Philip Seymour Hoffman, Gary Oldman, Pierce Brosnan, Geoffrey Rush, Ralph Fiennes and Rachel Weisz (who won an Oscar for her efforts). Writing as le Carré, one of Cornwell's more recent novels to become a feature film is "Our Kind of Traitor" (R, 1:48), a story which continues the author's tradition of setting his roller-coaster-like plots against a backdrop of big ideas, but this one is set in a greater variety of international locations than usual and has narrative that's been described as somewhat Hitchcockian.

    Peregrine "Perry" Makepiece (Ewan McGregor) is a college professor whose marriage to successful attorney (barrister, to be specific), Gail Perkins (Naomie Harris) is going through a rough patch. He had recently slept with one of his students and he feels that his professional accomplishments are inferior to those of his wife. The couple takes a short vacation to Marrakesh, Morocco in an effort to put a spark back into their marriage. Instead, Perry ends up hanging out with a larger-than-life Russian man named Dima (Stellan Skarsgård) whom he meets in a local bar. In the space of just a couple days, Perry accepts Dima's generous but forceful invitations to drink together, to play tennis and to attend a couple parties. Gail joins Perry at the second party, but is unhappy about how it cuts into their alone time, and when Perry disappears for a while, Gail wonders what he's up to. Fortunately (and unfortunately) Perry is just talking privately with Dima, who reveals himself to be more than just a friendly Russian businessman.

    Dima tells Perry that he launders money for the Russian mob and is concerned that he is about to be asked to "resign" (which would mean that Dima's family would end up "resigning" with him). Before any of that can happen, Dima wants to defect to the UK. He asks Perry to deliver to MI6 a memory stick with the names of British officials being bribed by the Russians to grease the skids for a major banking deal. Dima hopes this information will be enough for MI6 to grant asylum to Dima and his family in exchange for further intel. Dima says that Perry is the only one he can trust, and Perry is just kind and honorable enough to want to help save Dima and his family. Perry is also pretty naïve, thinking that he can "just" give the files to MI6 and be done. Perry soon finds out differently, as does Gail who also gets roped in.

    An MI6 agent known as Hector (Damian Lewis) is keen to follow up on this lead, but it won't be easy. Hector's boss doesn't think there's enough to go on and thinks that Hector is motivated by revenge against a former supervisor (Jeremy Northam) who may be involved in the bribery scandal. So, Hector lies to his crew (and everyone else) about having permission to proceed and goes forward with his unauthorized operation – which involves civilians, no less. Hector establishes contact with Dima, but Dima refuses to deal with anyone but Perry. Thus, Perry and Gail head to Paris where they "accidentally" run into Dima, who is on his way to Switzerland to sign over to his new bosses the accounts that he manages. Then, as things get more dangerous, Perry and Gail get involved more and more deeply.

    "Our Kind of Traitor" is a satisfying, but unremarkable thriller. Some of the plot points seem highly implausible and others feel underwritten. The story is well-constructed, but the acting (except for Skarsgård's) is listless and the entire film suffers from a lack of tension. Cornwell / le Carré novels often suffer somewhat in the process of adapting them to the big screen, but this one is still worth a look. "B"
  • Warning: Spoilers
    I was a little shocked to discover that this film was based on a book by John le Carré as I have enjoyed every other adaptation I have seen since Smiley's People back in 1982.

    It would clearly be inappropriate to discuss each event as it would be a long string of spoilers but in my opinion, it would spoil nothing because everything was so expected. I felt like I was five minutes ahead of the scriptwriter the whole way through - however, I have marked this as containing spoilers because I think that even mentioning the scenario would be enough to inform a movie lover what happens next.

    The most obvious moment came when Dima (Skarsgård), having at the outset made it clear that all he cared about was his family's safety, boards a helicopter in the Alps to fly off to hand over the goodies. Perry (McGregor) watches the helicopter take off and head to the horizon. Given the length of this shot of, only one thing can happen and I bet that anybody reading this who hasn't seen the film can guess.

    As an occasional amateur filmmaker, I would be embarrassed by this scene alone but the I spent whole film waiting for it to catch up with what I was expecting.

    I felt that the casting ranged from typecast to poor and the whole thing was so contained within a safety zone of mediocrity that it was utterly boring. When it wasn't predictable, it was clichéed.

    I want to say something positive as the film wasn't all bad but I can't narrow anything down to a specific. The tattoos were convincing but even gang tattoos are a bit old hat these days.
  • The recent success of the superbly staged BBC production of John Le Carré's "The Night Manager" with Tom Hiddleston and Hugh Laurie must have been music to the ears of the producers of "Our Kind of Traitor". Was it the case that the film was held back by the studio for that very reason – to ride the coat tails of that success? When you consider that principal photography of this pic was finished back in June 2014 (TWO THOUSAND AND FOURTEEN!) this becomes a definite suspicion. Because unfortunately, it's really not very good.

    Ewan McGregor and Naomie ("Moneypenny") Harris play struggling couple Perry and Gail, going through a bit of a sticky patch, emotionally and sexually. (They must be, since they can't even seem to get it together on holiday in Marrakesh where – frankly – romance and libido come out of the taps with the running water).

    One evening, after Gail strops off to "do some work", university lecturer Perry falls in with larger than life Dima (Stellan Skarsgård), a character who with his entourage reminds you immediately why having loud rich Russians in foreign holiday destinations is one of the curses of this new century. After many years of serving as the money-man for a Russian Mafia boss, Dima is now working for his unpredictable and merciless son, 'The Prince' (Grigoriy Dobrygin) who (for no readily apparent reason within the plot) seems to bump off his financier and his immediate family after big deals complete.

    One such big deal for Dima is approaching in Berne,with potentially compromising consequences for high level British politicians and bankers. Dima begs for Perry's help to use this information to save his family by turning informant to MI6. Perry passes on the request to MI6 operative Hector (Damien Lewis) who struggles to persuade his boss Matlock ("Sherlock"'s Mark Gatiss) to buy into the scheme. This leaves Hector, Perry and Dima in a "Mind The Gap" position, as they desperately try to escape the vengeance of the Prince and his henchmen without a safe harbour.

    It's difficult to pin down exactly where the issues are with this film. It is all just rather dull and predictable. Everything you expect to happen, does, and exactly when you expect it to. I haven't read the book (to be honest, I have never managed to get to the end of a Le Carré novel! #shortattentionspan) so I'm unaware of whether the issue lies with the source material or the screenplay by Hossein Amini ("Drive"; "The Two Faces of January").

    Naomi Harris is personable enough as the lawyer/wife, but is given absolutely nothing else to do other than review a contract and babysit: given the director is a woman, this is a surprisingly retrograde storyline for women in film. McGregor doesn't really convince in the Hitchcock 'fish-out-of-water-James-Stewart' role. The Russian 'baddies' emphasise their 'baddiness' by beating up woman, which feels unnecessary and gratuitous. This allows Perry to get another couple of 'knight in shining armour' badges on his Boy Scout sleeve (again, neither realistic or believable). Damien Lewis is all pipe-and-slippers in the MI6 role, probably not doing his credentials for Bond much good.

    The one role that really does work is Skarsgård as the jovial Russian, who dives into the role with great energy, delivering a full-on but convincing accent. He is eminently watchable throughout. It's also good to see young Alicia von Rittberg – so memorable in the tense 'dinner' scene in "Fury" – in a meatier acting role, even though her character's actions are so annoyingly dumb.

    The director is Susanna White, whose only other feature to date was "Nanny McPhee Returns". That's probably all you need to know.

    A film I was really looking forward to from the trailer, but a big disappointment I'm afraid.

    (That's my view, but how was it for you? Please visit http://bob-the-movie-man.com for the graphical version of this review and to provide your thoughts in the comments section.)
  • Good thriller from the master, John Le Carre, with some very interesting visuals by the director, Susanna White.

    The story concerns a young couple (Ewan McGregor and Naomie Harris) who meet a Russian, Dima (Stellan Skarsgard). It turns out that Dima wants something delivered to British intelligence, which the naive McGregor does. Dima is involved with the Russian mafia and he has information that will bring down corrupt politicians in London. When the couple delivers the flash drive to Hector (Damien Lewis) in British Intelligence, they find themselves embroiled in a dangerous situation.

    Some real revelations here for me anyway - first of all, I've never heard Damien Lewis speak with his native British accent; second, I've never before considered Stellan Skarsgard as having any sex appeal. His portrayal of the loud, friendly, charismatic Dima is fantastic. With people like Lewis and Skarsgard in the cast, you know the acting will be top level, and it is. McGregor and Harris hold their own, as good people who can't walk away from Dima and his family.

    Very good.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Our Kind of Traitor is that type of film that isn't totally rubbish, but it's not exactly Casino Royale either. It's one of the most mediocre films I have ever seen. To begin with, the plot is uninteresting. Basically, it's about a university teacher Perry (Ewan McGregor) who tries to help a guy called Dima (Stellan Skarsgård), who is from the Russian mafia. Perry is assisted by his wife Gail (Naomi Harris)and a guy from the MI6 called Hector (Damien Lewis) , who also has some generic agent friends. The plot is filled with problems. Why would a poetry teacher help a Russian mafia? Well the movie doesn't really explain it. Perry just agrees to help Dima, just because Dima seems like a friendly bloke. The relationship problems between Gail and Perry are unnecessary for the film. It never shows how they work out their problems, they just sort of get along after a while. Also, there is no real villain. There are just some guys, who don't like Dima (for a special reason) and want him dead. And that's it! It's boring all the way through by not having any interesting dialogue or memorable scenes.

    Visually it's nothing special. It's just really bland and gray. Some of the special effects are of questionable quality as well. The music is unnoticeable. Intense music was there when needed, but there isn't much else.

    Now the only reason this film is not horrible, is because the acting is decent at times. Ewan McGregor and Naomi Harris try their best, but they can't really save much, because of the boring dialogue. Stellan Skarsgård was miscast . His stereotypical Russian accent is embarrassingly bad and he just doesn't feel like a guy, who would be in the Russian mafia. Furthermore, the family of Dima is a weird one. They speak English in Russian family. The only constantly speaking Russian member was the mother, but even she was unconvincing . However, Damian Lewis did a great job. I thought his character was interesting and I understood his motives. He was also the best written character, but that doesn't say much in this film.

    Overall, you should probably avoid seeing Our kind of Traitor. It is average in pretty much all aspects.
  • patricenicolas23 August 2016
    Warning: Spoilers
    Wow, saw this on the plane, I was surprised how bad this was. Anything that ends up on the plane is either a blockbuster or a dud. The plot is really weak and predictable.

    How did this get made? Ewan McGregor is one of my favorite actors, but he just phones this one in!

    He's been doing that a lot nowadays.

    The other cast are pretty 2 dimensional.

    I tuned out in certain parts because nothing was going on. It's so unlikely that they would do this, they provide no strong justification, and then... the daughter, OMG! I didn't buy it.

    Stay away from this one.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    This film starts out with infinite potential and then flounders into mediocrity with a script that isn't enough to challenge the mind of someone watching their first thriller. The whole concept of involving an ordinary guy in a deep international intrigue isn't novel and in this case it isn't done well at all.

    It's just completely stupid to think that even a lousy intelligence service would involve complete amateurs to pull off a delicate bit of work yet in this story they do it again and again. I guess they needed to justify having the leading roles around for more than a couple scenes. After one chance meeting with the mob accountant they most certainly wouldn't risk having the amateur anywhere near their target the second time in Bern. It's just too preposterous.

    The truth is that the novels of Le Carré almost never translate well on film. His best chance at a good movie was The Little Drummer Girl and they f-ed that up quite a bit in the casting. This story was doomed from the start.

    It's truly amazing to me how much money and effort went into the making of such a mediocre film.
  • The only thing wrong with this movie is the plot. Or rather, now that I found out it's based on a popular novel, the script.

    It's got a wonderful cast and technically it's fantastic. Direction, cinematography, music, it's all good. Actor performances are above average as well.

    The script however is magnitudes of bad. Makes no sense whatsoever. There's no credible reasoning behind any of the actions taking place. It feels like it was written by a 5 year old. And the ending felt so abrupt and rushed that literally had me staring at the screen with my mouth open.

    I don't know what to say. Obviously something went terribly wrong with the adaptation. Maybe there's a director's cut that's at least twice as long that would make some sense to the viewer. As it stands now though it's an unwatchable abomination.
  • judy-1238012 June 2016
    I went to see this with a friend the day after it went out on general release and I have to say that we both loved it. We are both John Le Carre fans (though I had not read this book), and, even though my friend said there were slight adjustments, we were both hooked immediately. I understand that Ralph Fiennes dropped out of the project before filming, to be replaced by Stellan Skarsgard and I have to say that the recasting was a major reason for me (and my friend) wanting to see this film as soon as possible. He gave Dima a warmth that made you understand immediately why Ewan McGregor's Perry (and, eventually, Naomie Harris's Gail) would want to help him and his family. The feeling of foreboding on the Russian side of the story came over immediately, and the tension at some points had me curled up in my cinema seat. There were two occasions where I thought the outcome was signalled too clearly, but only one panned out as I expected and, having only just started the book, I can't say if that is how it was meant to be. I can only say that, as someone who has not always been a fan of Ewan McGregor, I found his character in the film to be believable and very likable, and Damian Lewis (as a Smiley- type figure) was really excellent. I have liked Naomie Harris since I first saw her in Pirates of the Caribbean (though she wasn't given a huge amount to do here) it is always great to see the hugely underused Jeremy Northam, and lovely to see Saskia Reeves in a part that might not be large, but was very affecting. Overall, however, it was Stellan Skarsgard's Dima that stole the show for me. He might not have been the bald, brown-eyed Russian of the book, but he made us care what happened to him and his family. I pre-ordered the film on Blu Ray as soon as I got home. Loved it.
  • Our Kind of Traitor provides a highly skillful presentation of the kind of film that Alfred Hitchcock used to specialize in - a naïve everyman suddenly pulled into a paranoid world of suspicion and intrigue with nothing but his good moral instincts to guide him. As indicated in the trailers, a British professor of poetry is suddenly befriended by a Russian mafia money launderer for the purpose of aiding his defection to the U.K. with evidence of massive Russian corruption of leading English politicians. The professor and his wife soon find themselves quite unwillingly dragged into situations in which prolonged torture followed by a terrible death is quite possible and in which their only defense is to pretend that everything is normal. Such a film can succeed only if credibility is carefully adhered, which is certainly the case here. This is the way to do political thrillers and the creators of this film have done it very very well.
  • When it comes to John Le Carre film adaptation's there's sadly quite a large gulf that has developed between the great: Tinker, Tailor, Solider, Spy, the middle of the road: The Tailor of Panama and the lackluster: A Most Wanted Man and while last year with the overrated miniseries The Night Manager, Le Carre has found success, My Kind of Traitor is very much the lackluster Le Carre, with Susanna White's thriller failing to get the blood pumping.

    The good Le Carre novels and adaptation's find themselves mastering both suspense and layered plots and they're both elements amiss from White's film (and The Two Faces of January director and Drive screenwriter Hossein Amini's lifeless script) that never feels either believable enough or interesting enough to make use of a recognisable cast that all flounder with subpar material that fails to play to their individual strengths, while White who has made a career behind camera largely as a miniseries specialist, directs Le Carre's subpar material without an ounce of any real effort that hampers the film even more so.

    Centring around the largely chemistry free struggling couple of Ewan McGregor's Perry and Naomie Harris's Gail, who in the blink of an eye become friends with Stellan Skarsgård's Russian Mafia accountant Dima on a European relationship saving holiday, only to find themselves quickly entrenched in a government backed mission to save Dima and his family from the big bad's his looking to rat out, Our Kind of Traitor fails to make us believe things could transpire as they do and for a film of this ilk to be so uninvolving and tiresome with a lack of any true thrills and spectacle (other than some great scenery and crisp DOP work from the ever impressive Anthony Dod Mantle), no amount of cast saving would've helped this film feel like anything more than a glorified BBC event film.

    Wasting a cast that could and should be doing much more and bringing to life a Le Carre story that surely ranks amongst some of his most uninspired, Our Kind of Traitor may be of some joy to the authors fervent followers and those that count BBC productions amongst their yearly calendar highlights but for the rest of us there will likely be countless other thrillers both from cinemas and the small screen that are endlessly more memorable and engaging than this instantly forgettable and seen a million times before affair.

    1 ½ tennis matches out of 5
  • I just learned that this is based on a Le Carré book. I only had read one book by him and didn't like it. I watched a mini series based on another one of his books, The night manager, and didn't like it either, so I am guessing his writing is not my cup of tea.

    I loved the cinematography, very nice shots of the Alps. Stellan Skarsgård is great as a Russian mobster. I think Ewan McGregor is a superb actor, but this role is pretty weak.

    The plot is very weak, and I really didn't care much for the characters. But most important, I just couldn't believe Ewan's character would do something like this.

    So the premise of the movie is flawed, at least for me. A bit of a disappointment overall. I don't think things were resolved well.
  • It starts of very nicely with glitzy and glam with the show of authenticity of the Russian mafia. It makes you believe that this movie and story line is well thought But as you make it half way through you can literally predict every scene which makes it dull. Its kind of obvious and you are hoping for the story line to take twist and surprise you, but what makes it dull and boring is that there are no twists and turns you expected. You want the story line to be different and make it movie more interesting but it lets you down as you continue to watch the movie half way through and then your interest in the movie just fades away.

    The movie doesn't do justice to the effort the actors have put in the movie. Its very disappointing. Could have been a good movie but its just an old time predictable bullshit movie. I mean how can you produce a movie which is so predictable haven't they watched any movies ?? I just hate movies which are so predictable, they wasted 90 minutes of my life i am not getting back...
  • I haven't read the book so I can't speak to the faithfulness of this adaption. I watched the movie with absolutely zero preconceptions.

    Although this is ultimately a cloak and dagger thriller, it is really driven by the main characters, a married couple whose relationship has been badly damaged. Their cold, semi-estranged dynamic adds to the tension of the unfolding mystery surrounding them, and somehow you find yourself (Well, I found myself) wanting them to overcome whatever has injured their marriage just as much as you want them to live through the political intrigues in which they have become embroiled.

    Skarskard's character, Dima, and his family, are another focal point of the story, and once again you really want them to pull through this awful situation. They aren't simply a plot device to give the antagonists something to be heroic about.

    It's not often that I really care about characters in a spy movie, but I was seriously invested in these people after just a few scenes. Our Kind of Traitor may not be as exciting as the Bond franchise, but I wanted Ewan McGregor's awkward professor to succeed at thwarting these criminals far more than I ever cared about Bond's shallow endeavors. It was also an interesting dynamic to follow a married couple mending their relationship in the midst of danger, rather that watching some steel- eyed killer sleep with numerous women without any real connection.

    Anyway, Bond comparisons aside, this spy film just felt authentic and personal in a way that many political thrillers do not, and it made all the difference to me.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Had the DVD, but never intended to watch this movie because of some of the mob reviews/parental remarks here. Gave it a chance anyways late one night out of desperation.

    Even the beginning scenes drew me in. What is this all about? As more of the mafia elements started to unravel, I knew then that I was hooked.

    The acting was not bad. The cinematography (as stated by another reviewer) was interesting. As the story progressed, I noticed that I kept wanting to see more of the drama unfold. This was definitely a good break from the cliché action & remakes that's common nowadays.

    Many scenes here can make you angry, but they seem necessary for the background of the story. There were times you wanted Obi Wan Kenobi to pull out a light saber, but, this story teaches, that even the average human being, can sometimes do questionable actions.
  • Laakbaar29 January 2017
    This is a proper screen adaptation of a John le Carre novel. If you're looking for a film to watch or rent, this is a good one. It tells the story of an ordinary British couple who, while on holiday, get caught up in a drama involving a member of the Russian mafia. This follows them after the holiday, and it turns into a terrifying adventure.

    I thought the movie was gripping. There were many scenes that had me at the edge of my seat. The scenes were set in various locations around Europe and the rest of the world. I disagree with those who say the plot developments were not credible.

    I think this movie is a little under-rated with it's current IMDb score. It's worth about 7.5.
  • It's an espionage film, via the remarkable wordsmith, John Le Carre. "Our Kind of Traitor" opened in July, 2016.

    I love the spy genre. And, this film, shot with stunning backdrops depicting Russia, Morocco, Switzerland, France and England, has a lot of positive aspects to it.

    "Our Kind of Traitor" is solid entertainment, but not by any stretch in the top entertainment category. It is more than just an okay flick however. In particular, It has some fine acting, especially from Ewan McGregor (as Perry, a university poetry professor); and, Naomie Harris, (as his girlfriend, Gail, a barrister.)

    Perry is the good, innocent guy in this movie, who inadvertently opens up a can of worms by getting too close to the wrong crowd. Harris is just along for the ride, with not a lot to do.

    Yes, you're right if you were thinking that Harris is that same gal that played a "hottie" (Moneypenny), in that last James Bond movie - "Spectre." As for McGregor, a fine Scottish actor, he's been on a roll as a rising international movie star, since taking on the lead in Roman Polanski's award-winning flick, "The Ghost Writer."

    The movie's story line for "Our Kind of Traitor," I must say, is seriously flawed. I didn't read the book, so I don't know if the adaptation is off or if I should blame it on the screenplay.

    The crux of the problem is that the film is set up to have you concerned mostly about the fate of a Russian Mafia gangster, "Dima," played brilliantly by Stellan Skarsgard. He fears for his life, and for the well being of his young family.

    Dina is desperate for a way to make a deal with MI6, British Intelligence, in order to gain sanctuary in England for himself and his brood. But, who really gives a good damn what happens to an operative for the Mob? Dina is likable fellow, but still he's a bloody gangster, who favors the "f" word. This is the rub in my opinion.

    Dima's Mafia boss, an Oligarch, k/a "The Prince," (Grigoriy Dobrgin), is planning to knock him off, just as he had whacked Dima's predecessor, who had also acted as his banker. Trust me, the scene where that slaughter takes place, on a lonely, icy Russian road, will make you - cringe.

    Ruthless doesn't begin to describe "The Prince" and his crime family. They are not only amoral killers but they treat their women like disposable chattel. They make our Mafia, with a tip of the hat to the late John Gotti, look like altar boys in comparison.

    Background: Since the fall of Communism in Mother Russia, a new class of predators have emerged there - the Oligarchs. Some of them have been systematically looting the country - stealing billions of dollars of assets and natural resources. A few have been caught and prosecuted - most haven't.

    A lot of the anti-Vladimir Putin propaganda that you witness in the Establishment Media in U.S. can be attributed to the fact that he, and his government, have taken a hard line against the lawbreakers in this clique of vultures. The vultures, however, know how to play the game and they play hard.

    Getting back to the movie. Perry and Gail, Londoners, are on a holiday in Morocco. Perry ends up partying with Dima, where Dima asks him to act as a courier for him. He wants Perry to pass off a memory stick to MI6, when he returns home. Unbeknown to Perry, it contains loads of inside information exposing high level Brit banking/corporate officials, including politicos, in crooked deals and payoffs with the Russian Mob.

    Perry makes it to London, meets with the MI6 honcho (Hector), played capably by Damian Lewis, and gives him the memory stick. This end of the tale gets complicated fast, since Hector's boss doesn't think Dima is such a good catch for the agency.

    Also, there's a wirepuller in the House of Lords, who is close to this evolving scheme, and the power-shakers in MI6. He despises Hector. Think House of Cards/Pefidious Albion!

    There are some interesting scene shifts from Morocco to London; then on to Paris; with a stopover in Bern, Switzerland; and later on to the the French Alps. As for tension/suspense, there's plenty, but not nearly enough to keep you hanging on the edge.

    "Our Kind of Traitor" will entertain you, but it's not in the forever-memorable thriller category. I'm giving it seven out of ten stars.
  • I like a good spy film so I thought I would give this film a watch and as you can probably tell by the summary I found this film incredibly boring as dull. The premise of this film sees a married couple on holiday get approached by a Russian gangster who wants him and his family moved to England to be protected in exchange for secrets. Ewan McGregor plays a professor in the film that is approached by this gangster and he does an alright job in this film. He gives as good a performance as he can but his character is just so dull, there is nothing interesting about him in this film and I will be surprised if you end up caring about him in this film. Stellan skaarsgaard plays the Russian gangster in this film and his performance is very mixed, overall I thought he did an alright job but at times he is just so over the top and cartoony with allot of his performance. Damian Lewis plays the British agent in charge of this investigation and he gives the best performance In this film. I thought he added quite a bit of depth to his character in this film and I liked his line delivery as well. There are times where he comes across as over the top but he overall overcomes it and gives a decent performance. Naomi's Harris plays McGregor's wife and I think she was pretty miscast in this film, her chemistry with McGregor is just nowhere to be seen and some of her line delivery is extremely awkward especially when she has to swear. The story in this film is so convoluted and confusing that you really won't have a clue what is going on and why it is happening. Nothing about this story is interesting and you will not care enough to try and figure out what is really going on. The script has some pretty decent over the top humour in in that will actually make you chuckle in this film, but the dramatic dialogue just falls so short that as mentioned before doesn't help these characters at all. The style of this film is painfully boring, The films pacing will just add to this films flaws and make it just hard to care about. Overall I don't think anybody should watch this film because it is so boring and just not worth the 2 hours of time.
  • Fairly interesting Le Carre adaptation with a familiar theme; Good Guys vs Bad Guys with an Everyman stuck in the middle, with no way out. Not an awful lot going on, and with incessant, portentous (and pretentious) background music indicating danger ahead, which doesn't come. Or when it comes it's not that dangerous.

    One of the disappointments for me was the lack of a staunch hero to commandeer the picture. Instead, we got Ewan McGregor, who wimped his way through the movie and seemed half-hearted and uninterested; 'leading from behind', I think, is the term in current usage.The one bright spot in the film was Stellan Skarsgard, who plays the traitor in question. He was the title character, crude and vulgar but a big-hearted slob you couldn't help rooting for. He did the best he could to raise the subject matter up from tedium, and almost succeeded.

    It is July and I wonder if we're going to get a "summer blockbuster" this year that we can recommend to all our friends. So far, we have a collection of animated kid's pictures doing great at the box office, so if your friends are aged 7 or below they've had several to recommend to you.
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