This is one of the better spy movies about the Cold War that have come out in the last 20 years and considering the importance of the Cold War, there should have been more movies like this made about what went on during this very difficult time in our Nations history.
The main character in this movie, played by Tom Hanks is James B. Donovan and he is an important American who should be more famous considering the important things he did for this country. After the trial of a Russian spy (Rudolf Abel), who was defended by Donovan, he was commissioned by the CIA to negotiate the prisoner swap Francis Gary Powers, who was a pilot who was shot down at 70,000 feet in a spy plane and the Russian spy. Where this true story got very complicated was when the United States wanted two prisoners in return for the Russian spy; Gary Powers and an Economics student who was arrested in East Germany, Fredrick Pryor. The politics of the negotiations between the Russians, East Germans and the United States all being handled by Donovan was for the most part interesting, but there were times when the movie stalled and was rather boring.
This movie hit the mark for the most part and was a good story to know about during the Cold War. Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg both did a solid job as the lead actor and director in this movie, but I don’t see this movie necessarily being up for best picture or best director, perhaps because the subject matter is not strong enough. At the end of this movie it was mentioned that James B. Donovan was also hired by President Kennedy to negotiate the return of American prisoners after the Bay of Pigs and was able to negotiate the release of 9 times more people than he was originally commissioned to return, which is another great accomplishment that more Americans should be aware of. Movies about true history events and great Americans like Donovan is another reason why we go to the movies, to learn about world history that most of us are not aware even happened.
I definitely recommend this movie.