‘London Spy’

John Thomas

Club Kid meets Serious Stud. The normally blithely unconcerned Danny, is not so today. Frustrated, he breaks his mobile phone and throws the pieces on the ground at his feet. They also land at the feet of the very enigmatic Alex, who happens to be jogging by on his morning run.

Alex pauses to inquire if Danny is okay –does he need help? When their eyes meet for this brief moment, the connection between the two is so intense that tears almost form. With the hope of meeting Alex again, Danny revisits that same spot days later and they do meet a second time.

Danny confesses to being an artist-type, living in a raggedy, shared flat with several carefree friends. Alex is an investment banker, living in a company-sponsored, large elegantly decorated flat. Proceeding cautiously, their relationship eventually develops into an intense romance.

The two confess to one another pieces of their past–Danny even introduces Alex to his long-time friend and mentor Scottie. Having been a member of the British MI6 for 30 years, Scottie can read people and approves of the developing relationship. After eight months together, Alex and Danny decide to take a trip.

With travel bag in hand, Danny arrives at Alex’s flat at the appointed time. There is no response to his ringing the door bell. Where is Alex?

Later and quite mysteriously, the keys to Alex’s flat appear at Danny’s work place. Danny goes to investigate and finds a code-locked cylinder left by Alex in his abandoned home.

Again, quite mysteriously, Danny is invited to meet Alex’s family – primarily his mother, Frances. The meeting is as spooky as is the disappearance of Alex. After his flat is broken into and ransacked Danny seeks Scottie’s guidance once again.

More strange occurrences take place – Danny feels he is somehow under constant surveillance. Feeling that way also, Scottie helps Danny form a plan to discover who is watching them. With years of experience as a spy, Scottie still has many friends in the “shadow areas” who are willing to help.

Danny is interrogated by the police regarding Alex, who the police feel has been murdered. The appearance of Danny’s parents is yet another mystery – what are they doing in Danny’s flat and why do they want to take him home?

A second visit with Frances is no more rewarding than the first. She is as enigmatic as her son Alex, or is his real name Alistair? For that matter, is Frances his real mother? Danny has suspicions as to what is taking place, but no real answers.

He leaves with no resolution until, as he drives away from Alex’s home, he pauses briefly to allow someone to join him in the passenger seat. He now, or will soon, have all the answers to his many questions. 

Main Cast members: Danny –  Ben Whishaw, Scottie – Jim Broadbent, Alex (Alistair) – Edward Holcroft, Frances – Charlotte Rampling

Directed by Jakob Verbruggen (Credits: The Alienist, The Fall), Long Spy is a “must see” because the intriguing story is beautifully presented.



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