“Communism. Capitalism. It’s the innocents that get slaughtered.” At the height of the Bond craze, John le Carré’s novels scrubbed the gold off the naked body with a wire brush, exposing vulnerable, scared individuals looking for happiness, hugging onto their dignity, as implacable forces dictated from obscure places they move this way and that.

As with Mishima, Criterion’s release of Spy is not only a superb presentation of a noteworthy film, but also an occasion to meditate on a writer and his universe. The package comes with an abundance of interviews and documentaries, which investigate and illuminate le Carré’s life, career and themes.

Grade: A

The Spy Who Came in From the Cold is currently available.