Friday, October 16, 2015

Bridge of Spies Review - 3 Stars

Tom Hanks turns in another solid role as James Donovan, in real life an insurance lawyer who negotiated the trade of a Russian spy for captured American pilot Gary Powers during the Cold War.  The story begins with the capture of Soviet spy Rudolf Abel.  The government needed a lawyer to defend Abel and uphold our justice system, while bowing to the political realities of the communist scare of the 1950’s.  Hanks does his best and saves Able from the death penalty by realizing the government may want to exchange him some day.  That day comes when Francis Gary Powers gets shot down in a U 2 spy plane over the Soviet Union in 1960.  Donovan threads the needle dealing with both the East Germans and the Russians .  One of the best aspects of “Bridge of Spies” is the performance of Mark Rylance as Able.  He underplays and captures our attention in one of the best award worthy performances of the year.  “Bridge of Spies” celebrates integrity and who better embodies that than Tom Hanks in a movie directed by Steven Spielberg.   Even though Spielberg gets more than a little heavy-handed at time, “Bridge of Spies” is worth your attention.  Does it deliver what it promises?  Uplifting true story.  Is it entertaining?  Compelling.  It is worth the price of admission?  A good story and true.