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Moonraker

Reilly, Ace of Spies - TV series

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Moonraker

It seems that the 1983 TV series, "Reilly, Ace of Spies", and its real-life protagonist, Sidney Reilly, have yet to feature on the GWF - I can find only one brief reference and that is in a list of WW1 films set in East Europe.

 

There are various offerings of the 12 episodes on YouTube, DailyMotion and other streaming services and at least some of these are of good quality. No doubt fictionalised, they cover the spy's exploits between 1901 and 1925. Although there's a gap between 1910 and 1918, all the episodes appear to relate to the build-up of international tensions before the war or to  the ending of hostilities and their aftermath.


Wikipedia on the TV series

 

Wikipedia on Sam Reilly

 

(Please, please,let it not be 36 years since I saw the series: I do hope that it was repeats that I saw some years later.)

 

Moonraker

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Hyacinth1326
Posted (edited)

Agreed. It was an excellent series with a stellar cast.  Production values were as good as it gets, if some of the sets were a little unconvincing (Shostakovich score or was it Carl Davis ?) and Troy Kennedy Martin's script crackled with verve and intelligence.  The backdrop was authentic (If I remember correctly wasn't the first programme about the Japanese  naval attack on Port Arthur ???)  Later programmes featured the death of Francis Cromie at the British Embassy in Petrograd if I recall.  My only caveat is that Sam Neil bears little resemblance to the real Sidney Reilly.

download.jpg

Sam Neill.jpg

Edited by Hyacinth1326

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SiegeGunner

Leo McKern didn't look much Basil Zaharoff either, but both were superb.

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Moonraker

I've got as far as episode 7 of 12. Now and then when under stress, Sam Neill does look a bit like the photo in Hyacinth's post. Kenneth Cranham, presumably with shaved head or "bald" wig", makes a realistic Lenin.

 

I've found most of the sets very convincing, except perhaps the brief glimpses of the Russian fleet at Port Arthur. But I struggled a bit with the different factions Reilly got involved with (or did not get involved with) in Russian in 1918.

 

Nice to see several well-known actors in the cast list, though in most cases I wouldn't have recognised them but for glimpsing their names in the cast list: Peter Egan, Tom Bell,  Sebastian Shaw, Bill Nighy, Hugh Fraser, David Suchet et al.

 

YouTube has deleted some listings for copyright reasons and I had to cast around a little for Episode 5. www.dailymotion.com/gb seems to have a good selection, though the first one I found for Episode 5 was a mirror-image.

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