The mysterious murder of a US senator bearing the distinctive trademark of the legendary Soviet assassin 'Cassius', forces retired CIA operative, Paul Shepherson to team with rookie FBI agent, Ben Geary to solve the crime. Having spent his career chasing Cassius, Shepherdson is convinced his nemesis is long dead, but is pushed to take on the case by his former supervisor, Tom Highland. Geary, who wrote his Master's thesis on Shepherdson's pursuit of the Soviet killer, is certain that Cassius has resurfaced.
Spooks aren't supposed to be creatures of habit. A retired CIA operative is paired with a young FBI agent to hopefully solve the case of a serial killer whose style of killings point to a Soviet operative long thought dead. In amongst the plot holes and ridiculous resolutions there's a more than competent Cold War political murder mystery trying to get out. Unfortunately first time director and co-writer Michael Brandt thinks he's John le Carré and in his attempts to be clever and tricky for the final third of pic, he just comes off as an amateur who is insulting his audience. Initially the pic is on safe footings. Ok! so it's conventional in formula, but the intrigue is there, Richard Gere and Topher Grace in the lead roles have our attention, and a turn of events at the 30 minute mark has us firmly in the story's grip. Sadly it never materialises into the top line suspense thriller the makers clearly were aiming for. As the narrative spins into a muddled mess, Brandt is forced to rely on a couple of livewire sequences to save the day; cue interrogation machismo and some car crash chaseville, but it's never enough to save the day. More so when Martin Sheen wanders back into the fold, it is here when you realise you have forgotten he was in the pic anyway! That pretty much says it all. 4/10