Posts Tagged ‘spy films’

NSA emails on Enemy of the State

Published February 8th 2017

Paranoid thriller Enemy of the State provoked such a reaction within the NSA that they instigated a large PR campaign to counter public perceptions of a surveillance agency running wild. NSA emails show that even while the movie was being made, agency employees were unhappy about the producers filming from the skies over Fort Meade. They also show that the NSA were asked to provide help on the production, but refused.

‘Would Only Encourage Snickers and Derision’ – CIA Review of Screenplay for The CIA

Published February 7th 2017

In 1969 the CIA obtained a copy of The CIA, a screenplay being developed at Universal Studios, written by William Woodfield and Allan Balter. Woodfield and Balter were perhaps best known for writing the TV series of Mission: Impossible, until they had a well-publicised falling out with series creator Bruce Geller. The Agency reviewed their script for potential issues with how it depicted the CIA and also for whether it would be suitable as a training film for CIA recruits.

Central Intelligence – Tom Secker on Uncle the Podcast

Published January 24th 2017
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I triumphantly returned to my favourite comedy show Uncle the Podcast to review the film Central Intelligence. The movie stars The Rock and Kevin Hart in a zany buddy comedy about a mild-mannered accountant who is drawn into the world of CIA black operations. To my knowledge Central Intelligence had no support from the CIA and is a genuinely funny film that subverts several elements of the usual CIA movie formula, not least that Kevin Hart’s character is an ‘unwilling fool’ who keeps trying to escape the manic clutches of The Rock and the CIA. After the film review came the beer review, as Aaron, Uncle and I took a long, hard look at the self-proclaimed ‘King of Beers’, Budweiser.

Subscriber Podcast #3 – Rogue One: A Star Wars Cash-In

Published January 1st 2017

In this month’s podcast for patreon subscribers I review Rogue One: A Star Wars Cash-In. The film is a spy movie/war movie about the rebellion stealing the plans for the Death Star and has a much darker tone and grittier visuals than most Star Wars films. The problems arise mostly in the lack of characterisation, which the producers tried to compensate for by jamming in as many visual references to the existing films as they could. I dwell on the lack of creativity and even basic storytelling skill in modern Hollywood blockbusters, before offering two ideas for Star Wars storylines that would be more engaging and less reliant on showing us things we recognise because we’ve seen them before.