By Debbie Elicksen.
Bridge of Spies (2015) is that moment of time when the post war, Cold War, and espionage all come together. It is a thriller based on the true story of a prisoner exchange that involves East and West Germany, the United States, and Russia.
Matt Charman and Ethan and Joel Coen penned the script and the movie was brilliantly directed by Stephen Spielberg.
American CIA U2 spy pilot Francis G. Powers (Austin Stowell) is shot down and captured by the Soviet Union. Meanwhile the KGB intelligence spy Rudolph Abel (Mark Rylance) has been arrested under the suspicion of espionage. James B. Donovan (Tom Hanks), an insurance lawyer, is assigned the unenviable task of defending Abel in court during a volatile time in post-war history. While Abel is considered guilty, Donovan finds a way to convince the justice system save Abel’s life from a U.S. death sentence so that he can be used for a prisoner exchange. That exchange would take every ounce of the lawyer’s negotiating skills, as his own life has also been put in danger.
Bridge of Spies won three Academy Awards for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role (Mark Rylance), Best Motion Picture of the Year, and Best Writing for Original Screenplay. It was also nominated for an Oscar for Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Score (Thomas Newman); Best Achievement in Sound Mixing; and Best Achievement in Production Design. Rylance was also nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture and won the BAFTA for Best Supporting Actor.
Scott Shepherd and Alan Alda also appear in the film. This gets five out of five stars.