A whistle-blower pot boiler.
The story of Edward Snowden is a good fit for a pot-boiler drama, and it's a good fit for conspiracy theory auteur Oliver Stone (JFK, Wall Street, Platoon).
The Oscar-winning documentary Citizen Four (2014) fully covered the story, but there was still an opportunity to create a suspenseful film with Hollywood production values, and Stone does not disappoint.
While the story is a bit clunky, Joseph Gordon-Levitt slides in and out of his accents and every scene with Snowden's girlfriend Lindsay Mills (Shailene Woodley) seems like another movie — a restrained Stone has created a cinematic thrill ride.
I recommend you see it in the theater, just in case they're watching you at home.
Simply put: A suspenseful take on one of the most interesting stories of our time.
Award potential: Despite the all-star cast and A-list director, there are too many flaws to merit serious Oscar attention, but it's a fun night at the movies.
The ten buck review: Worth ten bucks.