Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

Hardly famed as an instrument of understatement, Gary Oldman nevertheless proves just that as George Smiley, John le Carré’s frog-mouthed MI6 spook in this new adaptation from Tomas Alfredson (Let the Right One In).

Sapped of the chic and kinesis that have come to monopolise our expectations of espionage movies, what remains here is an evocative tone poem of disappointment and regret whose elegant manner of imparting narrative data via subtle sound editing and wunderkammer mise-en-scène make this a film to be both pored over and savoured.

With Colin Firth, John Hurt, Benedict Cumberbatch, Mark Strong, Tom Hardy, Toby Jones and Ciarán Hinds in supporting roles.

Gerard Elson works at Readings St Kilda.