Enigma | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe

As a longtime fan of Thomas Pynchon's Gravity's Rainbow, which begins with British code breakers during World War II, I'm a sucker for the romantic and paranoid atmosphere of this thriller on the same subject, adapted by Tom Stoppard from the novel by Robert Harris. Production designer John Beard has a field day, his period re-creation so rich you can taste it, and the fine cast includes Dougray Scott (who suggests a young James Mason), Kate Winslet, Jeremy Northam, and Saffron Burrows (though she's chiefly used as a glamorous icon). The film has other old-fashioned virtues as well: director Michael Apted's intelligent and creative application of Hitchcock (the romantic obsession of Vertigo, some of the mechanics of the early English thrillers) is in a different class from Brian De Palma's literal applications. The two main producers make an interesting team--Lorne Michaels and Mick Jagger, who, if I'm not mistaken, turns up as a fleeting extra in one of the flashbacks. In 'Scope; 117 min. Landmark's Century Centre.

Support Independent Chicago Journalism: Join the Reader Revolution

We speak Chicago to Chicagoans, but we couldn’t do it without your help. Every dollar you give helps us continue to explore and report on the diverse happenings of our city. Our reporters scour Chicago in search of what’s new, what’s now, and what’s next. Stay connected to our city’s pulse by joining the Reader Revolution.

Are you in?

  Give $35/month →  
  Give $10/month →  
  Give  $5/month  → 

Not ready to commit? Send us what you can!

 One-time donation  → 

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories