A Call to Spy is another true story of female heroism and sacrifice. During World War II, at the height of the resistance in France, the United Kingdom Special Operations’ “Spy mistress” Vera Atkins (Stana Katic) proposed the recruitment of women to serve as spies. Atkins believed women would not be suspected by the patriarchal Nazi forces and would be disguised as well as able to infiltrate enemy lines. Thirty-nine women were recruited over the span of four years. They were involved in espionage, sabotage, and reconnaissance. The early loss of 19 lives was devastating, but the women themselves were committed to their call.
Writer and director Sarah Megan Thomas researched the details, beginning with her intrigue about the American spy, Virginia Hall, who joined the operation. Thomas plays the role of Hall, supported by Katic and Radkika Pate who plays Hall’s fellow spy and friend, Noor Inayat Kahn. Each of these women broke through barriers of anti-Semitism, race, and physical disabilities.
The 120-minute film is intense and engaging from start to finish. Thomas builds the layers of the story and then peels them back, creating a tight performance. Historical details are added at the end of the film.
A rating of PG-13 acknowledges disturbing violence and imagery appropriate to the telling of this story. (Hulu)
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