Benedict Cumberbatch at the height of his powers.
What begins as a knock-off of the film “Bridge of Spies” from a few years ago becomes a harrowing tale of espionage, friendship, and international geopolitical maneuvering. For me, the relationship between Grevel and Alex is the best part of this film. The complicated relationship between these two men and their wives being a close second. It’s a fascinating study in relationships. The best message from the film, other than we need to stay aware of recent history to avoid repeating it, per usual, is that often the citizens of two countries fall victims to two governments at odds. As Alex says at one point, “our countries’ governments may hate each other, but our people are very similar to your people. It starts with two people talking.” Something to that effect. No matter how toxic those in power may become, everything can be boiled down to a relationship between two people, and good often triumphs over evil. Much more positive of an ending than I was expecting, but you have to look for it. The gulags get a little dark.