Steven Spielberg is the living master of modern cinema.
In his new film, [Bridge of Spies](tag:1402817) , Spielberg is in full form, tackling the legal and moral quagmire surrounding a silver-tongued insurance lawyer turned spy trade negotiator (Tom Hanks) at the height of the Cold War.
Without further ado, here are 3 reasons I believe this is Spielberg's next masterpiece:
Spielberg has such a knack for framing and moving his camera; he's best known for spectacle. But with a screenplay co-written by Joel and Ethan Coen, Spielberg has a spectacular script under the hood that allows him to drive the narrative through the sharp intricacies of Cold War politics and tense negotiation. It focuses on the flaws in our legal system while ultimately instilling hope in humanity's quest for justice. This isn't a Spielberg film in the sense of his family sci-fi or action-adventure classics, but it is certainly one of the best written scripts he's ever had to work with.
This is a dialogue-rich entry, but Spielberg and Janusz Kaminski use the camera to hook us into every moment. It's a film of mostly blacks and blues, with hints of red making its way onto Tom Hanks' tie as he fights to ensure that a suspected Russian spy he's been assigned to represent on trial receives due process. The film's opening is one of the most visually exciting in some time, executed with a masterfully steady pace and sense of quiet. Kaminski's handheld camera and color pallet evoke the New York of The French Connection and some of the film's third act feels like a shadow play out of The Third Man.
As skillful as Spielberg is with the camera, he also achieves the best from his actors. This is the fourth collaboration between Spielberg and Tom Hanks - Saving Private Ryan, Catch Me If You Can, The Terminal, and Bridge of Spies - and it seems they've only become better in partnership. This is a tour-de-force Tom Hanks performance - a juicy role he could really sink his teeth and charm into. Just as notable is Mark Rylance, who plays suspected Russian spy Rudolf Abel with such silence and subtlety, I was convinced Mark Rylance was Rudolf Abel. Few know Rylance is a Tony Award-winning actor and plays the title role in Spielberg's next film, an adaptation of Roald Dahl's The BFG. This seasoned theater actor might become Hollywood's next overnight sensation, leading me to wonder if Rylance could follow the path of Germany's finest, Christoph Waltz.
There are too many reasons to go see Bridge of Spies. It's one of the best movies of the year, certainly a jewel in the DeBeers that is Steven Spielberg's film career. But go find out for yourself!
Bridge of Spies opens today!