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Parents' Guide to

The Operative

By Danny Brogan, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Tense spy thriller has sexual and graphic violence.

Movie NR 2019 116 minutes
The Operative Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 18+

Based on 1 parent review

age 18+

Propaganda film

This was clearly a propaganda film made to make Israel look bad. Without Israel, the US would have been bombed many time over. Iran has threatened Israel time and time again to destroy their citizens. A threat of nuclear war is always on their minds. Trust me, a single, rich, good looking Iranian man like Farhad wouldn't be faithful to Rachel. Secondly she couldn't have done what she did in the server room without security cameras catching her. The film was unrealistic with no closure. It's graphic, full of curse words and sex. Not for children or teens.

This title has:

Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: (1 ):
Kids say: Not yet rated

Although it lacks the fast-paced action of The Bourne movies, The Operative proves just as tense and is perhaps a more realistic portrayal of the life of a spy. Kruger does a fine job as Rachel -- a character whose true nature we are kept guessing throughout. Whose side is she on? Are her feelings for Farhad (Cas Anvar) genuine? It's also refreshing to have a woman playing a role that is so often played by a man. Anvar deserves praise too, seamlessly navigating Farhad's journey from villain to pawn. Freeman's Thomas is primarily the narrator of the piece, retelling events to his increasingly suspicious Mossad colleagues. His strait-laced performance feeling in sink with the mood of the movie.

On a negative note, Rachel's sexual assault feels unnecessary -- a misguided attempt to increase the tension perhaps -- particularly as there are no repercussions, with the assailant, quite literally, just walking away. The movie's conclusion is also likely to divide audiences. But if you're looking for an espionage movie that's more slow-burning than explosive, then The Operative is worth spying.

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