the little drummer girl

Starring: florence pugh, alexander skarsgard, michael shannon, and max irons

 

REVIEWER: lyall carter

★★★★

Charlie, a young, fiery but unfulfilled British actress becomes entangled in a complex plot devised by a spy mastermind.

With the overwhelming response of critics and audiences alike to 2016's John le Carre miniseries The Night Manager, any fresh Le Carre adaption would be compared, fairly or unfairly, to the mini series that went before. And The Little Drummer Girl more than holds her own. 

This six-part miniseries, based on John le Carré's best-selling novel of the same name, is a passionate love story set in the late 1970s that weaves a tale of espionage and international intrigue. It follows young, idealistic actress Charlie, whose relationship with the mysterious Becker, an Israeli intelligence officer, leads her into a complex, high-stakes plot devised by spy mastermind Kurtz. She takes on the role of a lifetime as a double agent, and as she is drawn more deeply into a dangerous world of duplicity and compromised humanity, Charlie falls in love with both Becker and Kurtz.

The story might not zing off the screen as ferociously as The Night Manager, but The Little Drummer Girl is still a taut spy thriller that engages all the senses. The story's unfolding is more a pedestrian than breakneck pace, but thats are large part of the beauty of it. 

This allows the viewer to suspect everyone and their motives and double motives and to truly become engaged with the protagonists of this piece.

Surely 2019 has to be Florence Pugh's year? Boy can she act. She has the 'it' factor; that indefinable quality that allows her to completely transfix the viewer. Skarsgard is having a pretty good year too, well and truly stepping out of his True Blood shadow and is an acting force to be reckoned with. Shannon is more nuanced in this piece, leaving you wondering what his motives truly are.  

The Little Drummer Girl is a taut spy thriller with a great ensemble cast that engages all the senses. 

★★★★

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The Little Drummer Girl is available on DVD and digital from all good disc and digital retailers. 

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