Image copyright © by Marcus Trahan


(Spooks: The Greater Good, UK, 2015)

This one is a spin-off of a television show titled Spooks. I’m not clear on just how the two relate, whether characters carry over or if plot lines coincide, but I guess it doesn’t matter, really. It is well made, though I have to admit I had a hard time telling what was going on and who was who, sometimes. Which shouldn’t surprise me, since the main character is almost totally at sea almost all the time, too, buffeted here and there by events, never in control, never able to tell who the enemy is. Which is realistic, I guess, since double- and triple-crosses are the norm in the shadow world of spooks. Spying, at best, is a filthy business; at worst it is an atrocity, an affront to all human values. This movie makes that quite clear.

The main character is played by Kit Harington, the fellow who plays Jon Snow in Game of Thrones. Just a few days before seeing this movie we watched the penultimate episode of this sixth season, Battle of the Bastards, and I am still so pissed off at Jon Snow for his colossal ineptitude that almost lost him his entire army and did cost thousands of lives … well, let’s just say it was a little hard to separate the actor from the character. You know nothing, Jon Snow!

BTW: Seeing the London skyline in several shots, I realized that said skyline has been changing rapidly. I was familiar with the oddly shaped building, 30 St Mary Axe, which Londoners call “The Gherkin.” Well, that’s one way of looking at it. To me, it is a giant suppository. Look it up, see if I’m wrong. Next to it is another oddly-shaped structure, the Leadenhall Building.

But the strangest building was another I hadn’t seen before, just across the Thames, a crazy thing called The Shard. Which is exactly what it looks like, a shard of a larger piece of glass, stuck upright in the ground near London Bridge. Then I note that, at 95 stories … it is the 87th tallest building in the world! Eighty-seventh! Wow, the world’s architecture is changing faster than I can keep up with it, mostly in Asia and the Middle East. America and the West is rapidly being eclipsed. The tallest building in America (One World Trade Center, the “Freedom Tower”) is now the sixth tallest in the world. The Empire State Building, tallest in the world when I went there in 1964, is now thirtieth, behind even the Trump Tower in Chicago.

I know, this has nothing to do with the movie, but I just had to mention it. Look up the Shard. You’ll be amazed.