Eye of the Needle (1981)

So I watched almost all of this movie and loved it, it’s a really great period piece spy movie set in WWII era England.  Donald Sutherland is the brilliant antithesis to Charles Bronson after just getting done watching Telefon.  He’s complex, nuanced, likable and cold-blooded.  The plot is great, the acting is great, it’s just a really great movie.

There were 30 minutes left and I couldn’t figure out how they were going to drag out the ending.  It seemed like everything was all set to be finished, and then…

There was Lucy.

Holy shitballs…

There’s the fight or flight response and then there’s Lucy.  A woman who survived a 4 year marriage to Christopher Cazenove, it’s not unrealistic that she could handle herself but seriously, this woman was the opposite of almost every action movie woman ever.  She made practical decisions, even if they were a little challenging or ridiculously hard.  She seemed to make some common sense plans and when they had to be changed she adjusted accordingly.  She basically became a badass because she didn’t really seem to think she had a choice.  I don’t want to ruin it but I can give a few examples.

What would you do if you found out your lover is lying to you and probably killed your husband?
Lucy drugged her son and fucked the guy into complacency so she could sneak out in the middle of the night.

What would you do if you crashed the getaway car?
Lucy carried her sleeping son by herself through the massive rainstorm all the way to the lighthouse.

What do you do if you lose your loaded pistol?
Lucy next-leveled that shit and grabbed a shotgun.

What do you do if everyone else on the island is dead except you, your son, and the killer trying to break in?
Lucy taught herself how to use a radio transmitter and call for help.

Molotov cocktail tossed through window?
Lucy calmly puts the fire out.

Out of shotgun ammo, killer breaks window glass to start unlocking door, what do you do?
Lucy takes an ax and cuts off his fucking hand.  No tension building screaming while he lets himself in to do you harm, she literally cuts off most of his fingers as he’s reaching for the lock.

Killer has your son and the radio, calls German U-boat for help and escape, you realize he’s a spy as he’s transmitting?
Lucy electrocutes herself with a lamp to interrupt his transmission.  Electrocutes…herself…

Spy has broken your gun, told you he’s going and not to worry about him hurting you or your son and tries to get to beach and Uboat?
Lucy finds her pistol and chases him while shooting, manages to get him in the leg despite being a terrible shot.

Conflicting dramatic confrontation on the beach with ex-lover who apparently just wants to escape your blood-thirst at this point?
Lucy shot that fucker and watched him die.

Do all of the that and what do you probably look like?



She goes from being the very attractive occasionally topless adulterer you’d expect to hide under the bed into a very attractive, still occasionally topless ruthless killer of an incredibly dangerous deep cover professional assassin spy.

Now go to your PTA and look at those pretty moms in the same way…

This movie blew me away.