The Falcon and the Snowman

Critics Consensus

Stranger than fiction and improbably entertaining, The Falcon and the Snowman shows how easily idealism can be twisted into treason.

82%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 22

69%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 6,057

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Movie Info

After his father (Pat Hingle) finds him a job at the CIA, Christopher Boyce (Timothy Hutton) discovers the less reputable side of the American government through handling classified documents. As he grows increasingly disillusioned, Boyce decides to sell the information to the Russians in an act of defiance. A drug-addicted friend of Boyce's, Daulton Lee (Sean Penn), becomes involved in the plot and acts as a middleman between Boyce and the Soviets, but the erratic Lee fails to cover his tracks.

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Critic Reviews for The Falcon and the Snowman

All Critics (22) | Top Critics (4) | Fresh (18) | Rotten (4)

Audience Reviews for The Falcon and the Snowman

  • Jul 08, 2011
    The Falcon and the snowman is fairly good thriller. The story surrounds two friends who sell U.S government secrets to the Soviet Union. The Falcon and the Snowman has a good mix of drama thrown into it's real life thrilling story. The acting by Sean Penn and Timothy Hutton is very good. But by today's stndards with the Cold War over, the film looks dated of course. However there's something still appealing, and interesting about this story. The film is not perfect by any means, and does look a little cheap, but for what it is, The Falcon and the Snowman is a thriller worth watching. For the espionage buff and the cold war buffs out there, The Falcon and the Snowman is a very interesting film and will definitely appeal to them. There are of course better thrillers out there, but this is still a very engaging film with tense moments But considering that this was made in the 80's, what do you expect? A good, entertaining thriller, but it's nothing truly groundbreaking or really memorable. I've seen a lot better. I wasn't disappointed in the film, as I knew what to expect, but what is a little irritating is how much praise the film has gotten. I view it as an average good thriller with good acting. But some critiques of the film have gone overboard and prtaising it and saying it was a pulse pounding film. It was, but it lacked also enough fire in it's belly to make this truly a remarkable film.
    Alex r Super Reviewer
  • Oct 03, 2009
    This movie looks and "feels" outdated, really "80ish". At times I felt like I was watching a TV show from that era. That aside, the story is a bit slow, but Daulton Lee's character (played by Sean Penn) is too captivating to resist this movie. As he ups the stakes of the game, he manages to continue weaseling his way out of binds with his smooth-talking, savvy, rhetorical tactics. In an "Informant" kind of way, this has plenty of entertainment value. Schlesinger really seals the deal with a finely directed and edited climax that helps this story come full circle and sheds light on the ways the characters come to term with their actions.
    Richard F Super Reviewer
  • Jun 08, 2009
    Badly dated, but still a mostly solid political thriller with sure-handed direction by John Schlesinger. Zaillian's screenplay isn't perfect, but it moves at an effective pace and works well for the most part. Features great acting from Timothy Hutton and a young Sean Penn.
    Mike T Super Reviewer

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