Snowden: Releasing All of the Secrets

SNOWDEN

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DIRECTED BY: Oliver Stone

STARRING: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Shailene Woodley, Melissa Leo, Zachary Quinto, Tom Wilkinson, Scott Eastwood, Logan Marshall-Green, Timothy Olyphant, Ben Schnetzer, LaKeith Lee Stanfield, Rhys Ifans, Nicolas Cage

GENRE: Biographical Political Thriller

YEAR: 2016

COUNTRY: United States, Germany

Disillusioned with the intelligence community, top contractor Edward Snowden leaves his job at the National Security Agency. He now knows that a virtual mountain of data is being assembled to track all forms of digital communication — not just from foreign governments and terrorist groups, but from ordinary Americans. When Snowden decides to leak this classified information, he becomes a traitor to some, a hero to others and a fugitive from the law.1600x800-snowden-film-2016-43-jpg-cb6de713

Courtesy of The Australian:

“Gradually Stone increases the suspense with a climax of a sort being reached when O’Brian, on a giant video screen, reveals personal details he knows about Lindsay. Like another CIA operative, Chris Boyce, who back in the 1970s was horrified to learn of the agency’s efforts to destabilise the Whitlam government — as recorded in the book by Robert Lindsey and the 1984 film The Falcon and the Snowman, directed by John Schlesinger — Snowden makes the agonizing decision that the public needs to be made aware of the extent to which the government is invading the privacy of the world’s citizens.

19543336_303Some Stone films, such as JFK, Nixon and Born on the Fourth of July, have been bombastic in approach; Snowden is surprisingly low key, and all the more effective for that. Gordon-Levitt’s characterisation of the geeky idealist convinces on every level, and Woodley’s role as his more progressive partner has more depth than this kind of role usually allows. The film will start debates and raise questions, but its revelations are troubling and well worth delving into.”

PROS:

  • Main cast performance.
  • Steady pacing.
  • Not too much truth stretching.
  • Fantastic score.

CONS:

  • A “safe film” for Oliver Stone.

SCORE: 9.0 / 10

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