Sunday, February 12, 2012

“Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy”: Idiot?

There may be some moral value in feeling as stupid as I did last night, halfway through “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy,” the recent John Le Carré–based film starring Gary Oldman. Katie turned to me and said, “Watch his glasses. They’ll tell you whether it’s a flashback or not.” By that point, I was having trouble figuring out if it was a movie or not. The other options were dream, bad dream, and IQ test for idiots. I was failing.

It didn’t help to drive home and have Katie effectively explain the plot to me—involving Oldman as Smiley, a retired British spy called back to “The Circus” by “Control” (John Hurt) to ferret out a double agent who was leaking secrets to the Soviets in what was clearly a Cold War setting. Even I could see that: we don’t use rotary phones anymore and, like, where were the laptops?!

But you mean there really was a double agent?

It had been a relief to exit the movie theater and run into a tennis buddy of Katie’s and the husband of the buddy. While the gals caught up, the guys consoled each other.

I: Did you understand a word of that?
He: [Shrug, eye-roll, bemused smile.]
I: What the — ?
He: I think you have to read the book.

That might have helped, as would couples counseling. Because then there was the drive home and the realization—again—that in many areas my wife is way quicker than me.

There may be some value in that too.

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