ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Bridge of Spies: movie review

Updated on October 22, 2015
popcollin profile image

Collin's been a movie critic since 2009. In real life he works in marketing and is also a novelist ("Good Riddance" published in Oct 2015).

In theaters now.
In theaters now. | Source

Bridge of Spies, the latest from director Steven Spielberg (and his first film since 2012’s Lincoln), starts innocently enough. An elderly gentleman sits in his Brooklyn apartment in 1957, painting a self-portrait. A phone call sends him out into the street, where an unidentified gentleman is waiting to tail the man to his destination. The older man shakes the tail without much effort and arrives at a park bench, picks up a coin stuck to the underside of the bench, and returns home. Using a razor blade, the man slices the coin open and pulls out a folded paper with nondescript code all over it. Who is he? Who’s tailing him? And what’s the code for?

We learn that the man is Rudolf Abel (Mark Rylance), a Soviet Spy uncovering secrets about the United States’ nuclear weapons program. When he’s arrested by the FBI, his case is handed to insurance lawyer Jim Donovan (Tom Hanks), who is none too eager to defend the accused spy.

Part espionage thriller, part Cold War set piece, and part legal drama, Bridge of Spies is yet another masterpiece from one of cinema’s greatest directors. While Spielberg may be best known for popcorn fare like Jurassic Park, Jaws, and E.T., let’s not forget this is the same man who gave us what is arguably the 90s’ most powerful and important film-- Schindler’s List, along with similar classics like Munich and Saving Private Ryan. And though Bridge of Spies may not have the humanitarian resonance of those films, it’s just as superbly crafted.

WIth his trusted cinematographer Janusz Kaminski by his side, Spielberg proves yet again why he’s among the best. Whether it’s focusing on period details (you’ll swear the film was actually made in the late 50s) or getting sublime performances from his cast (Hanks and Rylance make it look so easy), he’s simply proven time and time again how to make a great movie.

Working from a smart, powerful script by the Coen Brothers and Matt Charman, Spielberg deftly switches back and forth between the Donovan/Abel plot and that of downed U-2 pilot Francis Gary Powers (Austin Stowell), whose capture in 1960 serves as the other half of the story.

The film brings the Cold War (including the rise of the Berlin Wall) into clear focus, and though much of the tension and drama is cerebral instead of physical, the movie is no less entertaining.

Conclusion

A beautifully understated film, Bridge of Spies never relies on gimmicks or an amped up/exaggerated story to suck the audience in. There’s more than enough in the real history to keep us fascinated and riveted, and in Spielberg’s and Hanks’ trusty hands, Bridge of Spies has already emerged as one of the best of the year so far and a sure-fire contender come Oscar-time.

Rating

4.5/5 stars

'Bridge of Spies' trailer

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Bmaster4616 profile image

      Brendan 2 years ago from Rochester Hills

      Didn't prefer it but still thought it was good. 7/10

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)