The Cold War is in full swing in the film, and lawyer James B. Donovan suddenly finds himself at the center of it when he’s tasked with negotiating the release of an American spy pilot in exchange for a KGB spy. It’s by no means a cut-and-dried mission, as the trailer shows. In the course of the story, Donovan and his family are targeted by a scared and angry public that wants to see the Soviet agent, Rudolf Abel (Mark Rylance) hanged.
In addition to dealing with the nation’s wrath, Donovan finds out that he has to venture beyond the Iron Curtain, as the negotiation will take place in East Berlin. It’s clearly a dangerous place for an American to be, especially given the high-stakes circumstances. Nonetheless, Donovan seems determined to find a way to handle the situation in the best way possible for both sides.
In spite of the conflict, the trailer shows a bond develop between Donovan and Abel. In a particularly poignant sequence, the KGB agent tells Donovan a story about a man the lawyer reminds him of: his father’s friend, the “Standing Man.” When border guards overran his house, they beat him, but he stood back up again every time, no matter how hard they hit him.
Bridge of Spies, which also stars Amy Ryan, Scott Shepherd, Sebastian Koch, and Alan Alda, hits theaters on Oct. 16.
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