Bridge of Spies

Drama | English | 141 minutes


James Donovan, an insurance lawyer, is assigned by the State Department to represent Rudolf Abel, a captured Soviet spy. Abel is convicted. Donovan persuades the judge to give Abel a life sentence rather than be executed,  as expected. Donovan reasons  there could come a time when the Russians capture a U.S. spy and a trade might then be possible. Donovan proves to be right. Francis Gary Powers, a U.S. U-2 pilot is shot down over Soviet territory and captured. Donovan is asked by the C.I.A. Director Allen Dulles to go to Europe and negotiate trade, Abels for Powers. Donovan learns he must deal with two countries: East Germany (home of Abels) and the Soviet Union (where Powers is in prison). In the dead of winter, fighting a bad cold, Donovan must now use his ultimate negotiating skills as a lawyer to make the trade happen.

Tom Hanks (James B. Donovan) / Mark Rylance: Rudolf Abel) / Austin Stowell (Francis Gary Powers) / Peter McRobbie (Allen Dulles)
Why Stream This Film?
It’s a great spy film that’s made even greater because it’s true.
  • Rotten Tomatoes Score (Critics Consensus): 91%
  • Metacritic Score: 81
  • Academy Awards: Winner, Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Mark Rylance); Nominated, Best Motion Picture; Best Screenplay (Matt Charman, Ethan Coen, Joel Coen)
  • BAFTA Awards: Winner, Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Mark Rylance); Best Screenplay (Matt Charman, Ethan Coen, Joel Coen)
  • AFI Awards: Winner, Movie of the Year
  • National Board of Review: Selected, Top Ten Films of the Year
Spielberg has taken an important but largely forgotten action-packed slice of the Cold War and turned it into a gripping character study and thriller that feels a bit like a John Le Carre adaptation if Frank Capra were at the controls.
Richard Roeper

Chicago Sun-Times

In BRIDGE of SPIES, a gravely moody, perfectly directed thriller, Steven Spielberg returns you to the good old days of the Cold War and the bottomless political chasms and moral gray areas.
Manohla Dargis

The New York Times

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