Smiley's People [Blu-ray] 
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- Language: : English
- Package Dimensions : 17.4 x 13.7 x 1.9 cm; 130 Grams
- Media Format : Blu-ray
- Run time : 6 hours
- Studio : BBC
- ASIN : B08LRPML7H
- Best Sellers Rank: 5,605 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
- Customer Reviews:
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WINNER OF FOUR BAFTAS, INCLUDING BEST ACTOR AND BEST ACTRESS. FULL RESTORATION FROM ORIGINAL FILM TO BLU-RAY FOR THE FIRST TIME.
Smiley and Karla in the final confrontation. The acclaimed BBC production of John Le Carré’s espionage classic.
The bespectacled spymaster is once more called from retirement to come to the aid of ‘the Circus’ - and he returns with a vengeance. The murder of an émigré Soviet General, who was also a British agent, sends him digging into the past on a twisted trail across Europe that moves, inexorably, towards a final showdown with his old adversary, Karla of Moscow Centre.
• Includes Collectors’ Booklet with production notes
• Interview footage with John Le Carré and John Irvin
• Restoration Featurette
Original transmission 20th September 1982 to 25th October 1982.
STARRING: SIR ALEC GUINNESS, EILEEN ATKINS, BERYL REID, BERNARD HEPTON, MICHAEL BYRNE, PATRICK STEWART, ANTHONY BATE, BARRY FOSTER, BILL PATERSON, SIÂN PHILLIPS, MARIO ADORF, MICHAEL LONSDALE, ANDY BRADFORD, CURD JÜRGENS, MICHAEL GOUGH, VLADEK SHEYBAL, MAUREEN LIPMAN, DUDLEY SUTTON, MICHAEL ELPHICK, LUCY FLEMING, INGRID PITT, TUSSE SILBERG, ALAN RICKMAN.
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If you've never seen Smiley's People before then you're in for a treat—it's a very faithful adaption of John Le Carré's novel, a sequel to the superb Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy. Nearly all the cast reprise their roles (including of course Alec Guinness—Le Carré had said that by now he was writing the books with Guinness in mind) with the notable exception of Michael Jayston as Peter Guillam, but you can't have everything. And it's made up for by appearences by from everyone to Mauren Lipman to Vladek Sheybal, with the actors playing Madame Ostrakava, Karla's daughter Tatiana and the hapless Grigoriev turning in particularly excellent performances. The soundtrack music is also particularly effective (and I see has also been given a digital and vinyl re-release to accompany this Blu-ray).
As to the cast, it's actually quite mind blowing just many familiar faces make an appearance in this. In the lead you have the great Alec Guinness, and he is excellent as ever. Among the supporting cast are such greats of British acting as Eileen Atkins, Maureen Lipman and Beryl Reid, Patrick Stewart as Smiley's adversary "Karla", a young Alan Rickman and quite a number of Bond baddies including Curd Jurgens (the arch villain from The Spy Who Loved Me), Michael Lonsdale (Moonraker) and Vladek Sheybal (that memorable chess player in From Russia With Love). All are on top of their game. All are solid. And it's a joy to watch them in such an intelligent thriller.
The DVD is fine. Picture and sound quality are absolutely adequate for a tv production from the early 80s. The 4 : 3 aspect ratio is less than ideal for modern widescreen devices, but it's the original format, so that can't be helped and should not be criticized. Subtitles are available. By way of extra features there is interview footage with John Le Carre and John Irvin.
From 1982, this six-part drama series is widely regarded as one of the best ever made for television and you can see why; beautifully paced, with a fantastic script and superb acting all around, from a great cast. As in Tinker, Tailor...,Smiley is played by the incomparable Alec Guinness, as the immovable, inscrutable, rock around which the plot unfolds. Many of the character from Tinker, Tailor are back, played by the same actors (Bernard Hepton as Toby Esterhase, Anthony Baton as Lacon and Beryl Reid as Connie Sachs), which gives it a sense of continuity that Le Carré, of course, intended (Smiley's People, being the third and final instalment of his 'Karla Trilogy"). While there is a different Director in the chair (Simon Langton), the style, pace and feel are very similar to Tinker, Tailor, (not surprising, perhaps, given that both screenplays were written by Le Carré, himself!).
It is brilliant. Highly recommended.
The 2 DVD set contains all six episodes + interview footage with Le Carré and John Irvin (Director of tinker, tailor).
A different sort of story but well-constructed and, though moving slowly like its predecessor, it again delivers a plot which twists and turns engaging the viewer throughout. You would expect nothing less from a Le Carre based screenplay.
It goes without saying that Sir Alec Guinness's Smiley is mesmerising (in a slightly different way from the previous) and inevitably the supporting cast live up to the same standard. In particular, Toby Esterhazy's new persona is fascinating but he cannot resist slipping back into type as the heat builds, at least till the denouement after which he fades again into his preferred new life.