Bridge of Spies brings Cold War history to frontlines
Another Cold War movie rolls into theaters, but instead of an action-packed stylish blockbuster, Bridge of Spies offers a glimpse into what life was like in the late 1950s against the backdrop of an intriguing legal drama.
In Bridge of Spies, Tom Hanks plays James Donovan, a New York insurance lawyer, who’s elected to represent a suspected Soviet spy, Rudolph Abel, played by Mark Rylance.
After appealing a guilty verdict, Donovan is once again thrown into a hostile situation when he agrees to negotiate a trade with the Soviet Union for two captured Americans in exchange for Abel.
Hanks’s portrayal of Donovan dealing the internal struggle between public admiration and his moral compass adds dimension and depth to an already well thought-out movie.
He has to do what he thinks is right by holding up the very foundation of the U.S. justice system by defending a Soviet spy and giving him due process of law, but in the process will put his family in a position where they will be seen as Soviets themselves.
It is a character dilemma that drives the entirety of the movie and Hanks plays the role perfectly.
With a sweeping cinematographic style and dialogue written by the Coen brothers that will keep you on the edge of your seat as if it was an action movie (while still providing a classic Tom Hanks thin layer of witty humor), Bridge of Spies is an important movie that accurately represents the terror and fear of the Cold War.
It does not describe, but illustrates the diplomatic hostility between Germany and the Soviet Union in Berlin, specifically regarding the Berlin Wall.
It makes viewers reflect on the way kids were taught to react in bomb crises at a young age and wonder what their perspectives of the conflict might have been at a young age.
Though it also consistently draws on the theme of justice, Bridge of Spies calls into question what it means to be loyal to your country while remaining faithful to your principles.
A thought-provoking movie such as this cannot and should not be overlooked.
An all-star cast combined with impressive direction, brilliant writers and a mesmerizing story creates an experience that should not be passed up.
This is definitely a movie that will be on all of our radars when we start to judge all of the great movies from throughout the year.
By Will Aldana and Cal Curran