It’s been three years since a Steven Spielberg film last graced the silver screen, and, dagnabbit, our long wait is nearly over. The legendary filmmaker is reuniting with Tom Hanks for the Cold War thriller Bridge of Spies. The political films of Spielberg, in my ever-so humble opinion, are a mixed bag — Lincoln was well-acted but felt too procedural and Munich‘s tension was sometimes undercut by some heavy-handed choices — but I’m still amped up for the Cold War paranoia that Bridge of Spies is teasing, and we have two new clips from the film that focus on Hanks’ character James Donovan and the moral quandary of having to defend an accused Soviet spy in open court. There’s also an ace in the hole for Bridge of Spies, and that’s the fact that the screenplay is co-written by Joel and Ethan Coen, alongside Matt Charman. Think about that for a second — the Coen Brothers and Spielberg working together on the same movie. It almost sounds too good to be true.
Co-starring with Hanks in Bridge of Spies is Mark Rylance, Scott Shepherd, Amy Ryan, Sebastian Koch, and Alan Alda. The film opens in theaters on October 16th. Be looking over your shoulder when you enter the theater because you don’t know who’s watching you watch Bridge of Spies.
Free a Traitor
The official synopsis for Bridge of Spies:
In the 1950s during the early stages of the Cold War, tensions are rife between the U.S. and USSR, so when the FBI arrests Rudolf Abel (Mark Rylance), a Soviet agent living in New York, the fear and paranoia only escalate. Charged with sending coded messages back to Russia, Abel is questioned by the FBI but refuses to cooperate, declining their offer to turn on his country, and is detained in federal prison pending trial.
The government, in need of an independent attorney to take on Abel’s defense, approaches James Donovan (Tom Hanks), an insurance lawyer from Brooklyn. But Donovan, a former prosecutor at the Nuremberg trials and highly regarded within the legal community for his profound skills as a negotiator, has little experience with allegations of this magnitude and isn’t eager to get involved. Advocating such a deeply unpopular defense would make him a public figure and could subject his family to scrutiny, disdain and even, potentially, danger.