Bridge of Spies “BRIDGE OF SPIES” is solid and uplifting! This Cold War espionage thriller from the masterful Spielberg is a terrific portrait of an uncanny American hero which is taut, philosophically meaty and even surprisingly humorous in parts. The icing on the cake are the tremendous performances from Tom Hanks and Mark Rylance, who significantly elevate the whole watching experience. But it’s serious cinema that requires your pored attention throughout, and not suitable for those looking for breezy weekend entertainment. Based on the 1960 U-2 incident, the film is set during the Cold War and tells the story of lawyer James B. Donovan (Tom Hanks) who is entrusted with negotiating the release of Francis Gary Powers—a pilot whose U-2 spy plane was shot down over the Soviet Union—in exchange for Rudolf Abel (Mark Rylance), a captive Soviet KGB spy held under the custody of the United States. The film’s 3 major highlights are – its exceptional writing by Matt Chairman, Ethan Coen and Joel Coen which keeps you absorbed throughout, the dexterous direction by Steven Spielberg, who pushes the right buttons to maximize the crowd-pleasing potential of the material without the need for cheap manipulation or shameless sentimentality and wondrous acting by all its performers. There is heft in screenplay that will keep the connoisseurs pleased, and there are frequent doses of funniness that’ll keep the average viewer interested as well. The scenes are amazingly treated and the tension of the thriller is maintained till the end. Spielberg shifts tones seamlessly, from the taut, nearly wordless opening sequence, to fantastic comedy, to strained trials, thoughtful negotiations and all the way through to the kind of apprehensive ending you'd expect. The sets are magnificent and the feel is amazingly authentic. Tom Hanks stars as the American attorney tasked with negotiating the release of a U-2 spy plane pilot who was shot down over Russia at the height of the Cold War in this historical drama, and he’s truly immaculate. Steven Spielberg finds the perfect use for Tom Hanks' asquint gravitas. Rylance's performance on the other hand is particularly interesting as he infuses Abel's dry understatements on his predicament with just the right dose of quiet irony. All in the supporting cast too are superb. In all, “BRIDGE OF SPIES” isn't just a great movie but also a meticulously made one, which sends the audience out feeling proud, reassured, and satisfied. If you relish brilliantly made and expertly enacted cinema based on a historic event, you will definitely love this thriller. Go for it!