I love all these descriptions of the actors of Tinker Tailor. So many adjectives!
It’s a treat to be back in Le Carré’s world, where amid the tangle of plots and counterplots there are moments of lucidity when you sit up and say, “I’ve got it now!” The first hook is Tom Hardy as Ricki Tarr, a Circus assassin who vanishes for months, then shows up in Smiley’s house with a story about a woman who nearly revealed the name of the mole—before she was captured by the Soviets. He wants Smiley to save her, and when Hardy wants something, you feel it: With his huge lips and tortured beauty, this young actor is among the most compelling of his generation, and the lovely Svetlana Khodchenkova breaks your heart as the woman he can’t protect.
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy is full of faces you’ll love to study, like the one belonging to Benedict Cumberbatch as Smiley’s aide, with his hooded eyes and impossibly high cheekbones. Hurt’s chain-smoking Control is a human husk, as if his innards have been blackened and charred by suspicion. Kathy Burke plays the lone female Circus officer we meet as a plump mother figure full of naughty inside knowledge. Colin Firth has stripped himself down to pure old-boy condescension.
(Source: New York Magazine)