Hawaii Mom Blog: Bridge of Spies Review




October 16, 2015

Bridge of Spies Review

A dramatic thriller set against the backdrop of a series of historic events, “Bridge of Spies” tells the story of James Donovan (Hanks), a Brooklyn lawyer who finds himself thrust into the center of the Cold War when the CIA sends him on the near-impossible task to negotiate the release of a captured American U-2 pilot. Screenwriters Matt Charman and Ethan Coen & Joel Coen have woven this remarkable experience in Donovan’s life into a story inspired by true events that captures the essence of a man who risked everything and vividly brings his personal journey to life. The film will be released in theaters nationwide on October 16, 2015.

My husband had a chance to attend the screening of Bridge of Spies (Rated PG-13), and below is his review:

When I first saw the trailer for Bridge of Spies, I knew this was a movie I wanted to see.

It did not disappoint.

Bridge of Spies is about an actual event in the midst of the Cold War. The movie starts off with the capture of a Russian spy, Rudolf Abel (Mark Rylance) in Brooklyn, New York. The government wants to give the appearance of a fair trial so they get an insurance lawyer, James Donovan (Tom Hanks), to represent him. Although he knows that this will make him look un-American, his fight to give the spy a fair trial, despite resistance from the judge, his boss, and the CIA, shows what type of American he truly is.

Despite his efforts, Abel is convicted. With the whole country out for blood, Donovan persuades the judge to not give him the death penalty because, he argues, Abel could be a bargaining chip in the future should an American get captured.

Of course, an American does get captured. Pilot Francis Powers (Austin Stowell), is shot down while on a surveillance mission. Donovan is tasked with coordinating the trade which will be done in East Berlin. Donovan must make the deal as an American citizen, with no government ties (or security) in a place that is not the safest on earth at this time in history. The Berlin wall is undergoing construction, and an American student, Frederic Pryor (Will Rogers) has recently been captured on the wrong side of it. Against the CIA’s wishes, Donovan tries to bargain for the release of both Americans in exchange for Abel.

Tom Hanks does a great job in the role of James Donovan. He is the All-American actor of our generation and was perfectly cast as the lawyer tasked with the un-American job. Mark Rylance also turns in a great, subtle performance as the captured spy. It was nice to see the bond that is formed between these two men who are so loyal to their opposing countries, as well as to discover what they individually stand for.

Bridge of Spies is a very entertaining movie. Knowing that it is based on events that actually took place makes it all the more so.

Bridge of Spies is now in theaters.  Click here for show times.

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