When you come across a great film, it’s always a good idea to do some research and check out other movies that are in the same sphere, so to speak. With our If You Liked series we intend to do just that. Each week we’ll be presenting you with a selection of films you’ll love “if you liked” that week’s particular highlighted movie and/or director.
This week’s film recommendations are based on Steven Spielberg’s Best Picture nominee Bridge of Spies. The film is set in 1957, in the midst of the Cold War, and focuses on New York insurance lawyer James Donovan who’s enlisted to provide a pro-bono defense for Rudolf Abel, who is accused of spying for the Russians. The CIA then sends Donovan to East Berlin to conduct precarious negotiations with the Soviets to exchange Abel for a recently captured U.S. Air Force pilot, Francis Gary Powers.
Today we’ll be sharing with you six other Cold War-related films that are guaranteed to please – Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964), The Hunt for Red October (1990), The Lives of Others (2006), The Manchurian Candidate (1962), and Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011).
Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)
A film about what could happen if the wrong person pushed the wrong button – and it played the situation for laughs. U.S. Air Force General Jack Ripper goes completely insane, and sends his bomber wing to destroy the U.S.S.R. He thinks that the communists are conspiring to pollute the “precious bodily fluids” of the American people.
The Hunt for Red October (1990)
Based on the popular Tom Clancy novel, this suspenseful movie tracks Soviet submarine captain Marko Ramius (Sean Connery) as he abandons his orders and heads for the east coast of the United States. Equipped with innovative stealth technology, Ramius’ submarine, “Red October,” is virtually invisible. However, when an American sub briefly detects the Russians’ presence, CIA agent Jack Ryan (Alec Baldwin) sets out to determine Ramius’ motives, fearing he may launch an attack on the U.S.
The Lives of Others (2006)
In 1983 East Berlin, dedicated Stasi officer Gerd Wiesler (Ulrich Mühe), doubting that a famous playwright (Sebastian Koch) is loyal to the Communist Party, receives approval to spy on the man and his actress-lover Christa-Maria (Martina Gedeck). Wiesler becomes unexpectedly sympathetic to the couple, then faces conflicting loyalties when his superior takes a liking to Christa-Maria and orders Wiesler to get the playwright out of the way.
The Manchurian Candidate (1962)
Near the end of the Korean War, a platoon of U.S. soldiers is captured by communists and brainwashed. Following the war, the platoon is returned home, and Sergeant Raymond Shaw (Laurence Harvey) is lauded as a hero by the rest of his platoon. However, the platoon commander, Captain Bennett Marco (Frank Sinatra), finds himself plagued by strange nightmares and, together with fellow soldier Allen Melvin (James Edwards), races to uncover a terrible plot.
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011)
In 1970s England the head of MI6, Control (John Hurt), dispatches an agent (Mark Strong) to meet with a Hungarian general who knows the identity of a Soviet spy in the organization’s ranks. However, the mission goes wrong, and the general dies before he can reveal the information. Undersecretary Oliver Lacon (Simon McBurney) calls veteran agent George Smiley (Gary Oldman) back from forced retirement to ferret out the mole and stop the flow of vital British secrets to the Russians.
If you liked Bridge of Spies, we highly recommend checking out Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964), The Hunt for Red October (1990), The Lives of Others (2006), The Manchurian Candidate (1962), and Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011).
Also be sure to check out 10 Movies to Get You Through The Holiday Season and 20 Slasher Films Every Highsnobiety Reader Should Know.