Plot- During the Cold War, an American lawyer is recruited to defend an arrested Soviet spy in court, and then help the CIA facilitate an exchange of the spy for the Soviet captured American U2 spy plane pilot, Francis Gary Powers.
Review- And so this is how the “Year of the Spy” ends. Not with the disappointing Spectre, but with one of the great films of this year and arguable one of the greatest spy stories every told. Even better, it’s based on a true story.
Bridge of Spies is a triumph on every single level. The acting is uniformly magnificent, every shot perfect, the atmospheres and attention to period detail is exquisite. Its got humor and suspense and a sense of a man who isn’t quite sure if he’s out of his depth or not but is going to keep trying to do the right thing.
True, there are little niggles- Tom Hanks (as he is want to do) does come across a little bit like a boy scout, everyone in this film has a cold and… er…. I ‘ll come back to the niggles.
This is an old school spy film, of grey men sitting around and talking, before sending someone off on a seemingly impossible mission. If your expecting car chases, explosions and gun-play (as I suspect some of my fellow audience members were) are going to leave very disappointed. This is a film about avoiding conflict at all costs. And you feel the constant threat of what could happen if things go sideways.
I was a little surprised to see the soundtrack for this film being timed at 48:52 as I was loving the fact that whole stretches of the film passed without a single not being played. Either that or Thomas Newman has put together an incredibly subtle soundtrack. Is that a niggle? It’s going to have to do.
Don’t be surprised when this shows up in my “top ten films of the year” in a month or so.
My Score- SEE IT NOW!