Bridge of Spies

Theatrical Release: October 16, 2015
Bridge of Spies


An American lawyer is recruited by the CIA during the Cold War to help rescue a pilot detained in the Soviet Union.

Dove Review

“Bridge of Spies” is quite a film. It features a top-notch performance from Tom Hanks as attorney James B. Donovan, who is assigned to defend Russian spy Rudolf Abel (Mark Rylance). This movie is based on true events. Donovan is determined to give Abel a fair defense and, despite his unpopularity for doing so, pushes the judge at every turn to do the right thing. He suggests that death would not be the proper penalty for Abel, as he might come in handy as an exchange option should Russia capture an American spy. As it turns out, that’s just what happens. Before this, in a humorous scene, Abel tells Donovan he would face death if he had to, but “that would not be my first choice.”

The film contains a real authenticity about it, featuring the look and the clothes of this period in American history in the late ’50s and early ’60s. Seeing the old “tube” TV sets will certainly bring nostalgia to some viewers. Also, the friendship that develops between Donovan and Abel, not to mention Donovan’s grit and perseverance, is interesting to watch. However, regrettably, strong language prevents us from being able to award this movie our Dove “Family-Approved” Seal. It’s a shame, because this well-made film could have reached more families had they put the reigns on the profanity.

Content Description

Faith: None
Integrity: None
Sex: Husband and wife kiss.
Language: GD-3; MG-1; J-1; F-2; S.O.B.-3; H-2; "Da*ned"-1; A-1; S-1
Violence: Footage of atomic bomb exploding and the destruction of houses; man's house is shot at several times, and glass and various objects shatter; a pilot ejects from his plane, which is destroyed; man is punched in stomach; people are shot climbing the wall in Berlin.
Drugs: Smoking in several scenes; man wants cigarettes; pipe smoking; wine with meals; drinking in several scenes; a comment about vodka.
Nudity: Man in underwear.
Other: Conspiracy, and Russian spy in America is caught; a "scratch pin" is given to American pilots so they can commit suicide if they are captured; tension and disagreements between characters.


Company: Buena Vista
Runtime: 135 min.
Reviewer: Edwin L. Carpenter