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Recommended age 12-18
141 minutes
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BRIDGE OF SPIES cover image Click to play video trailer
This film is nothing other than legendary and an immediate classic. Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg are back together again, to make another incredible dramatic and genius film. With historical facts, a heartfelt and dramatic story, this film is not only bound to be an Oscar contender, but I think this film may swoop any other film this year, and win the film of the year award.

This is a drama. Although it cracks jokes here and there, it really is primarily mainly a dramatic re-enactment of an historical event. The story itself is a large adventure with action and intense scenes filled with various human emotions and unpredictable actions that keep the viewer on the edge of their seat.

The story starts in the middle of the Cold War, in Brooklyn. A man believed to be a Soviet Spy is arrested and, because of American law, he is supposed to get a fair trial. The man responsible for defending him in court starts noticing things and instead of just making it look like a fair trial, he actually tries to help this 'spy' get the right sort of action.

I don't know how Steven Spielberg (director) does it but, he makes these stories come to life and helps you connect with the characters so that you cry, laugh and almost fall of your seat because it's so intense! The camera shots explore the scene from a variety of angles and go way beyond just showing one element. With each camera shot, you are prone to say, "nice shot." For example, in one scene, they are on a bridge and, instead of showing a sky high view as you might expect, he shows it from the prospective of the people. It is snowing; you can't see the other side or the people very well. You can just see a few lights and it is just so perfect. If you are a fan of Spielberg's work as I am, you will be happy to see some of his famous wide shots which help scenes seem to float into each other.

As for the acting, Tom Hanks has done many roles and this is truly one of his best. He plays a character that does so many dangerous things and does them for a few people that he doesn't even know. He shows extraordinary skill portraying this character, bringing out emotions we can relate to. Full and heartfelt, with each scene his character gets better and better to the point that you are just sitting there with your eyes wide and forgetting to breathe thinking, "What is he going to do next?". When he is upset, you're upset. When he is terrified, you're terrified. He is perfect for this role and this is easily one of his best work.

For this film, I cannot choose a favorite scene. Each scene is so important in its own way. Each scene is so spectacularly done. Each scene is so entertaining whether it's funny, intense or dramatic One of the scenes that was most impressive is when we see an American spy flying a plane, 70,000 feet over Russian territory. He is gathering intelligence and hoping to get some information about nuclear defenses. His plane is being attacked and the problem is, he was supposed to go down with the plane. The cockpit shatters and he goes into free fall. I love the scene because it looks like he is falling from 70,000 feet at an alarming rate. The execution of this is outstanding. It is clear and intense, which is why I love it so much.

The subject of this film is rather mature like the scenes near East Berlin during the time the Berlin Wall was being constructed. A part of Berlin is cut off from food and everything else. There are many other scenes featuring the impact of the Cold War. Because of these, I recommend this for ages 11 to 18. I enthusiastically give it 5 out of 5 stars because this film is legendary. It is mind blowing in so many parts and, I believe it is one of the best films I have ever seen.

Reviewed by Gerry Orz, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13

In the cold war, A lawyer, James B. Donovan recruited by the CIA and involved into an intense negotiation mission to release and exchange a CIA U-2 spy-plane pilot, Francis G. Powers that was arrested alive after his plane was shot down by the Soviet Union during a mission- with a KGB intelligence officer, Rudolf Abel who was arrested for espionage in the US.
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