Ben Oliver

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Spooks: The Greater Good

You can do good, or do well.
19 August 2017

A feature length version of the UK TV show. This time Harry Pearce (Peter Firth) has to go to ground after an operation goes wrong. He suspects a mole and tries to recruit the help of an ex-agent (Kit Harington) to uncover the plot.

Hard to find many good things to say about this soulless spin-off. Peter Firth is solid as the spy boss but it’s just not enough to make a whole movie work, and as a result it comes off as a weaker episode of the TV show rather than a triumphant return to the big screen.

The title “The Greater Good” comes from the notion that Pearce must co-operate with a terrorist in order to obtain information critical to uncovering the mole, and as a result prevent an American takeover of MI5. It’s a tedious case of internal politics; something that Pearce used to make interesting on screen, but in this case he’s out in the cold.

The cast struggle with the weird, stunted dialogue. Someone spent more time googling ‘stuff spies might say’ than they did actually writing a screenplay.

Spooks: The Greater Good isn’t an overtly terrible film and the opening scenes are fairly gripping. It’s the slow realisation that nothing interesting is going to happen beyond the start that makes you wish you’d bitten down on the cyanide capsule sooner.

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