Bridge of Spies (2015) - Rotten Tomatoes

Bridge of Spies (2015)



Critic Consensus: Bridge of Spies finds new life in Hollywood's classic Cold War espionage thriller formula, thanks to reliably outstanding work from Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks.

Movie Info

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 from DreamWorks Studios. Steven Spielberg and Mark E. Platt produce a film written by Matt Charman. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovimore
Rating: PG-13 (for some violence and brief strong language)
Genre: Mystery & Suspense, Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Matt Charman, Ethan Coen, Joel Coen, Matthew Charman
In Theaters:
On DVD: Feb 2, 2016
Dreamworks Pictures - Official Site


Tom Hanks
as James Donovan
Mark Rylance
as Rudolf Abel
Alan Alda
as Thomas Watters
Noah Schnapp
as Roger Donovan
Dakin Matthews
as Judge Byers
Peter McRobbie
as Allen Dulles
Eve Hewson
as Carol Donovan
Michael Gaston
as Agent Williams
Billy Magnussen
as Doug Forrester
Marko Caka
as Reporter (uncredited...
Edward James Hyland
as Justice Warren
Austin Stowell
as Francis Gary Powers
Victor Verhaeghe
as Agent Gamber
Mark Fichera
as FBI Agent
Brian Hutchison
as FBI Agent
Henny Russell
as Receptionist
Rebekah Brockman
as Alison (Donovan's Se...
Jesse Plemons
as Joe Murphy
John Rue
as Lynn Goodnough
Jillian Lebling
as Peggy Donovan
Joel Brady
as Police Officer - Bro...
Michael Pemberton
as Lie Detector Test Ad...
Geoffrey Rude
as Pilots in Motel Room
Michael Kempen
as Pilots in Motel Room
Stephen Kunken
as William Tompkins
Jon Curry
as Agent Somner
Wes McGee
as US Pilot
Jim Ferris
as Bailiff
Lucia Ryan
as Crying Girl
Nolan Lyons
as Classroom Boy #1
Hayley Feinstein
as Classroom Girl #1
Andy Schneeflock
as Gentleman on Subway ...
Victoria Leigh
as Classroom Girl #2
Sawyer Barth
as Classroom Boy #2
Ashlie Atkinson
as Classroom Teacher
Laurie Dawn
as Secretary on Subway
James Lorinz
as Gentleman on Subway ...
Patricia Squire
as Older Lady on Subway
Le Chance DuRand
as Millie Byers
Mike Houston
as Man in Courtroom
Joe Starr
as Courthouse Reporter
Hamilton Clancy
as Courthouse Reporter
Jonathan Walker
as Courthouse Reporter
Greg Nutcher
as NYPD Lieutenant
John Taylor
as Radio Newscaster
Tracy Howe
as Angry NYPD Cop
John Henry Cox
as Partner at Watters L...
Mark Zak
as Soviet Judge (Powers...
Victor Schefe
as Soviet Translator
Will Rogers (IV)
as Frederic Pryor
Daniela Schulz
as Family #1 at Berlin ...
Moritz Berg
as Family #1 at Berlin ...
Emma Nazahn
as Family #1 at Berlin ...
Kai Wido Meyer
as East German Soldier ...
Kristoffer Fuss
as East German Soldier ...
Thomas Hacikoglu
as East German Soldier ...
David Wilson Barnes
as Mr. Michener
Henning Bormann
as Prison Official
Ketel Weber
as Checkpoint Soldier #...
Maik Rogge
as Checkpoint Soldier #...
Tim Morten Uhlenbroc...
as Checkpoint Soldier #...
Mathias Gartner
as East German Youth
Rafael Gareisen
as East German Youth
Nico Ehrenteit
as East German Youth
Radik Golovkov
as Soviet Embassy Recep...
Lucy Dreznin
as Lydia Abel
Michael Schenk
as Cousin Drews
Mikhail Gorevoy
as Ivan Schischkin
Wanja Götz
as Soviet Guard
Stefan Langel
as Soviet Guard
Vladimir Vilanov
as Soviet Guard
Ivan Shvedov
as 2nd Soviet Interroga...
Merab Ninidze
as Soviet Main Interrog...
Konstantin Frolov
as Soviet Director/Offi...
Steve Cirbus
as Michael Verona
Michael Kranz
as Checkpoint Guard #1
Max Kidd
as Checkpoint Guard #2
Frederic Heidorn
as East German Guard (P...
Nils Malten
as East German Guard (D...
Nina Gummich
as Hilton Waitress
Maximilian Mauff
as Ott's Secretary
Jon Donahue
as Agent Faye
Martin D. Dew
as CIA Agent (Glienicke...
Ivan Shvedoff
as 2nd Soviet Interroga...
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Bridge of Spies

Critic Reviews for Bridge of Spies

All Critics (257) | Top Critics (48)

There is plenty of striking work on view, including that of Mr. Dreamworks himself, who still has eerily keen instincts for maximizing the emotional impacts of his shots.

Full Review… | May 18, 2016
Epoch Times

This is a filmmaker with a lifetime of skill and experience, crafting his vintage pictures with style and grace, and we're all better off for it.

Full Review… | May 3, 2016

Bridge of Spies is an incredibly well-made film that should be applauded for its craft and controlled tone, and will appeal to those looking for something more mature than a Bond film.

Full Review… | May 3, 2016
New Zealand Herald

It's rare to see a protagonist who's so gently human, so righteously patriotic, and so believable, making "Bridge Of Spies" one of the most striking spy movies ever made.

Full Review… | April 9, 2016

It's a mellow film which, much like Lincoln, aims for believability rather than excitement.

Full Review… | April 6, 2016
South China Morning Post

The importance - and the horrors - sitting behind its Cold War backdrop is illustrated in a rather lazy and stage-like manner, contrasting Spielberg's typically spot-on detail.

Full Review… | April 1, 2016

Audience Reviews for Bridge of Spies


Steven Spielberg. Tom Hanks. Period piece. Sound familiar? I mean, it definitely is, but this film from the dynamic duo proves to be more than meets the eye. Based around the true story of Brooklyn insurance lawyer James B. Donovan taking on the case of reputed spy Rudolf Abel, the story is set among Cold War tensions at their height, shortly after the Rosenberg trial. Tasked with helping Abel gain constitutional rights against a country at arms with the Soviets, it is a film filled to the brim with intelligent discourse and a penchant for reflective empathy.


Spencer S.

Super Reviewer

An intriguing behind-the-scenes negotiation during a heightened period of danger, Bridge of Spies relies upon its history to do the heavy lifting and it's plenty enough for a handsomely made, reverent, and engaging legal procedural that's also hard to muster great passion over. Tom Hanks is again a noble everyman, this time an insurance lawyer, James Donovan, called in to defend a mild-mannered Russian spy (Mark Rylance) captured during the Cold War. Things get even more complicated when spy pilot Francis Powers is shot down over Soviet airspace. The movie's civil liberties arguments are pretty clear and still applicable to our modern era, but the movie becomes exponentially more interesting once Powers is captured and Donovan travels to Eastern Berlin to negotiate a prisoner swap while trying to work three sides, the Americans, the Russians, and the Eastern Germans who were hungry for legitimacy. It's during these back-and-forth negotiations and posturing that the movie really hits its stride, pulling incredible facts together while forcing our protagonist to be the world's greatest poker player. It's the details of this story that makes it feel more fulfilling from spy techniques to the new life on the other side of the Berlin Wall. The acting is robust and Rylance (TV's Wolf Hall) makes a strong impression in a role that requires him to be cagey to a fault. Hanks is his usual determined, inspirational self, which plays all the right emotions in a way that still feels expected and a little boring. Bridge of Spies is a slighter Steven Spielberg affair, a good story well told with good actors but a movie missing essential elements to plant itself in your memory. It's a fine movie but sometimes fine is just not enough, and considering the talent involved in front of and behind the camera, I expect better.

Nate's Grade: B

Nate Z.
Nate Zoebl

Super Reviewer


"Bridge of Spies" is a very "nice" film. There's nothing challenging, controversial, exciting, illuminating or particularly inventive about it. It's little more than a well-executed Hallmark film featuring Tom Hanks. Well done, but very corporate.

Christian C

Super Reviewer

Bridge of Spies Quotes

Ivan Schischkin: This is not an equitable trade, sir.
James Donovan: But what you're saying is, if Powers has given up everything he knows then Moscow would trade? Why wouldn't they? As for Abel, if he dies in an American prison, the next Russian operative who gets caught might think twice about keeping his mouth shut. And you never know, Abel might want to see the sky again and decide to trade Russian secrets for small American favours.
Ivan Schischkin: How can we know this? We little men. We just do our jobs.
James Donovan: Like Lieutenant Powers. He's just a pilot.
Ivan Schischkin: He was making photographs from 70,000 feet when he was shot from the sky. People in my country consider this an act of war.
James Donovan: We have to get off this merry-go-round, sir. The next mistake our countries make could be last one. We need to have the conversation our governments can't.
Ivan Schischkin: I will ask Moscow. Who knows what they will say. There are a lot of people, Mr. Donovan, who doesn't want this exchange to ever take place.
– Submitted by Lucas B (40 days ago)
James Donovan: We have to have the conversations our governments can't.
– Submitted by Roland D (3 months ago)
James Donovan: Aren't you worried?
Rudolf Abel: Would that help?
– Submitted by Chloe B (3 months ago)
James Donovan: It doesn't matter what people think. You know what you did.
– Submitted by Rey N (4 months ago)

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