1954. The Second World War is long gone but the Cold War has taken its place and is ruling international politics. Three Yale students get enlisted by their respective countries’ Secret Service departments. The next 40 years they’ll be at the heart of international espionage, covering events like the Bay of Pigs, the Hungarian revolution and the hunt for moles within the agencies
Sound and Vision:
This mini-series contains a good level of detail and decent contrast. Even the darker scenes are pretty easy to follow and we didn’t spot any specific compression errors that would spoil the fun too much.
The sound does a nice job as well with some good use of the surround speakers and subwoofer. Especially during the action scenes (Bay of Pigs, Hungarian Revolution) these nicely come into play but do keep in mind that this is TV and not a big budget movie.
This six hour miniseries does something we haven’t seen in a long time: show 40 years of history from a specific perspective, in this case espionage. The role of the CIA and the KGB in world history has never been put on the screen in this way and although it’s fictional stuff, there are so many things that are accurate (including the high-placed CIA mole) that it’s easy to believe this is how things really happened.
Of course, the acting helps a lot with this and I must say that the main cast, including Chris O’Donnell, Michael Keaton and Alfred Molina do a terrific job. As years pass by you see them changing their way of thinking, their attitude and with Keaton it’s compelling to see how he slowly but steadily grows more and more paranoid up to a point he gets thanked for his services. Only slight “goof” is that his return later on is a bit hard to believe but seeing the overall quality of this mini-series we gladly forgive that error.
Overall definitely something lovers of spy movies should check out.