"Snowden" was part of the London Film Festival's line-up and this movie has divided critics. After I got to watch it, I understood the reasons of this divisive response. Joseph Gordon-Levitt stars in this biopic of the ex-CIA Agent Edward Snowden. It's a real story based on the events that led to Snowden's Russian political asylum. The real Edward Snowden appears in the closing scene.
Edward Snowden's story
This is the story of an ordinary military man who ends up working in the CIA . After discovering dubious government procedures, he decides to go rogue. The movie is not just the description of his working life, it depicts also the love story between Snowden and his fiancé Lindsay and it covers almost a decade. Shailene Woodley is a convincing photographer and girlfriend who supports the protagonist in his risky choices, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt is great in the main role. .
Trying too hard to be convincing
This movie is trying too hard to convince you of the story they are telling. It's just too much: sometimes it tends to be didactic, sometimes it's just boring. It's a 2 and half hour movie that doesn't create any emotional bond with the viewewer. Joseph and Shailene are great, but the direction and the stoytelling struggle to convince you. Not even the ending with footage of the real Snowden is enough. Sometimes it feels contrived and Oliver Stone always plays safely with this depiction of a complex American story. There aren't emotional moments and there isn't a proper amount of tension: if you know Snowden's story, you will end up bored, because you already foresee what is going to happen. I didn't like the beginning as well, it felt a bit out of context and I'd have preferred a biopic focused on just a short period of his complex and interesting life. It could have been more effective.
In conclusion, "Snowden" is not a really bad movie, sometimes it's interesting and entertaining, but it's not an unforgettable moment of #Cinema.
It doesn't dare to be unique or different from previous entries in the same genre.
Have a look at the "Snowden" trailer below: