Saturday, September 17, 2016

Snowden Movie Review

Joseph Gordon-Levitt & Shailene Woodley (r) star in Snowden

Tastes Like Liberal

Rotten Tomatoes Plot: Academy Award-winning director Oliver Stone, who brought Platoon, Born on the Fourth of July, Wall Street and JFK to the big screen, tackles the most important and fascinating true story of the 21st century. Snowden, the politically-charged, pulse-pounding thriller starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Shailene Woodley, reveals the incredible untold personal story of Edward Snowden, the polarizing figure who exposed shocking illegal surveillance activities by the NSA and became one of the most wanted men in the world. He is considered a hero by some, and a traitor by others. No matter which you believe, the epic story of why he did it, who he left behind, and how he pulled it off makes for one of the most compelling films of the year.

Snowden argues, "It's all about economic and social control." He's right... to a degree (i.e. cover your webcam) but Stone inevitably takes Snowden to extremes, painting an adulatory portrait of a government traitor. Conspiracies/opinions aside, the movie is (at times) mesmerizing to watch. Credit Gordon-Levitt for another sterling turn (although his accent was distracting/unnecessary) and Rhys Ifans, who delivers his finest (and most chilling) performance to date. It runs long (134 minutes) and lacks suspense (epileptic seizures don't count) but if you're concerned about/interested in how Big Brother operates behind closed doors, you're in for a treat.

Grade: B