MI-5 (Spooks: The Greater Good) Review

“The action is good and the story is alright, but it is obvious that you’re not getting the whole story if you haven’t watched the television show.”

MI-5 (or Spooks: The Greater Good) is movie starring Kit Harington about, you guessed it, MI-5. More specifically it is a movie about a high profile terrorist who escapes from MI-5 custody, and the leader of the counter-terrorist department believes it was an inside job so he goes rogue to figure out who is the mole. If that sounds a little complicated it is because it is, this movie (which I am going to call MI-5 from now on) has one of the more convoluted plots that I have seen. But the good news is, after reading the Wikipedia page I think I know why.

So MI-5 starts off right in the middle of the transportation of this high-profile terrorist. It is a very well done sequence, and I thought that it would set the tone for what I was about to watch. Unfortunately once that sequence ends I was thrown into a story that was very complex, but I didn’t understand any of it. There was dudes jumping off bridges (but then not actually jumping off bridges), there was dialogue that was completely going over my head, and there were so many characters I struggled counting them all let alone knowing anything about them. I was about to come on here and write a scathing review about why this is an example of bad filmmaking, but then I looked at the films Wikipedia page. It turns out that MI-5 is a continuation of the television show Spooks, which I had never heard of. This would explain why all of the characters seems to have a complex relationship, and also why there were many “emotional” moments in the beginning of the film that completely fell flat for me. Of course, this doesn’t excuse those sins but at least I understand why they were there (what I can’t understand is the need for redundant location cards, we get it, you’re in London) .This theme carries on throughout the entire movie with characters having very unclear motives, and an ending the is kind of anti-climactic. Lucky for me, I don’t watch action movies for the plot; but unfortunately this wasn’t an action movie. But again I was lucky because the movie was a great spy-thriller film (wasn’t that a roller coaster of emotions)! Yes even though the story was a complete wash for me, I had fun watching this movie (when it wasn’t just people sitting in a room talking). The action scenes were very well done, but much like a spy thriller should, the action had very little flair instead opting for a more gritty experience comparable to the Bourne films. It wasn’t just the fight scenes that made me enjoy the film but also the twists in the story. Even though I knew very little about these characters I was pretty invested in them by the halfway point. This made all of the twist legitimately surprising to me and they definitely kept me on my toes.

Overall MI-5 is a movie that is hard for me to recommend. The action is good and the story is alright, but it is obvious that you’re not getting the whole story if you haven’t watched the television show.


I give MI-5 a C

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