Monday, February 19, 2007
Breach is great!
I'm movie buff and a political junkie who is a fan of spy literature (fiction and non-fiction). So it's not surprising that went to see and enjoyed Breach in which Chris Cooper does a fantastic job playing the Robert Hanssen, the FBI agent who was convicted of selling secrets to the Soviet Union. To say that Hanssen was (is) a complex character is an understatement. A self-proclaimed patriot and anti-communist ideologue who betrayed his country spying for Moscow and a devout Catholic who engaged in kinky sex. Cooper captures all of that in a way that explains (to some extent) why he was able to deceive everyone and for so long. Director Billy Ray gets our attention without exploiting the material: no kinky sex or car chase scenes and very little violence. But yet everything hits you straight in the face. Bottom Line: Why did Hanssen do it? Certainly not for ideology. While money probably played a role, the main reason had to do with boredom and ego. The guy felt suffocated by not-very-brilliant superiors and wanted to prove to himself that he was smarter than everyone else.