Snowden Directed by Oliver Stone

Snowden Directed by Oliver Stone
Courtesy of TIFF
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Making a movie about recent history is always a risky move; too often, not enough time has passed to fully understand the scope of events and their repercussions on the rest of the world.
 
What Edward Snowden did is no exception. The NSA whistleblower's leaking of thousands of classified documents may seem heroic to some, but as John Oliver pointed out in a segment on surveillance, the average American only has a limited understanding of who he is.
 
Oliver Stone's latest politically charged film, Snowden, seems like an attempt to shed light on the motives and man behind the historical move, but ends up muddling his message in the process.
 
Joseph Gordon-Levitt is the spitting image of Snowden in the lead role, but that's one of the few redeeming factors of a movie that's heavy on the melodrama (his relationship with real-life girlfriend Lindsay Mills, played by Shailene Woodley, occupies a substantial amount of its runtime) and theatrical recreations of scenes from the Academy Award-winning documentary Citizenfour. Honestly, you should probably just go watch that instead.

(Elevation Pictures)