I wanted to know more. Well, I really wanted to drop by and talk to him for a couple of days and see if he was the guy I wanted him to be or not.
I've watched some of his tapes and I've pretty much settled, for the time being, on the Snowden the whistleblower side. He's the good guy who believed in the ideals of his country and was willing to risk his freedom, even his life, to keep his country honest. That's the narrative that fits most comfortably with what I've seen and heard about Snowden.
So we went to the 12:50 pm showing of Oliver Stone's Snowden today. I did read a New York Times review when I was checking last night about when the movie played here. After seeing the movie I'd concur with the reviewer.
This may be the movie that Oliver Stone has been practicing for. It's restrained and straightforward. It goes back and forth between the 'right now' and flashbacks. The 'right now' starts with his arrival in Hong Kong. The film is totally consistent with my sense of who Snowden is and why he did what he did.
The surprises for me were:
- how conservative he was politically and personally
- how he voiced concerns to others he worked with and for while he was an employee or contractor with the various security agencies
- that he suffered from epileptic seizures
So, until others can present a more convincing narrative - along with supportive evidence - I'm more than willing to call on Obama and others to find a way to let Snowden come back to the US honorably. Don't make this like the Cuba sanctions that go on forever or our marijuana phobia because we can't admit we're wrong.
There are more thoughts, but I need to do other things and this movie is worth seeing. It's well made and is entertaining. At the very least, it should further open the discussion how we keep spy agencies accountable. And how we treat those who call them on it.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt is great in the starring role. And I liked how the real Snowden's image replaces the actor's at the very end.