Reviews for Sneakers ( 1992 ) 1080p

Hilarious and fun!

By: HotToastyRag
If you read a plot synopsis, nothing will seriously be ruined for you, but if you just pop in Sneakers and let every scene unfold without any prior knowledge, it'll be an extremely entertaining ride! Without giving too much away, because I'm an advocate of the second type of viewing, Robert Redford is the head of a secret group of hackers, including Sidney Poitier, Dan Aykroyd, David Strathairn, and River Phoenix. Everyone has skeletons in their closet, Robert Redford in particular, so when they're threatened to take on a particular case, they've got no choice but to accept.

The entire team has great comic timing and chemistry together. Robert and Sidney make a few jokes about getting older, but they really don't look much older than their heydays. I'd never seen David Strathairn in a movie before, and he was so convincing in his role as a blind man, I thought Hollywood was starting the career of an actually blind actor. Sneakers is a fantastic movie with a perfect blend of humor, action, suspense, and romance. It's full of quotable lines and memorable scenes. If you don't start laughing the next time you hear someone say "password", you probably need to watch the movie again. Every time I watch it, I get inspired to chop off my locks because of Mary McDonnell's adorable haircut. It's one of the cutest do's ever!

Flawed but Entertaining

By: Claudio Carvalho
In 1969, the idealistic hackers Martin Brice and Cosmos use the computer to transfer funds from conservative politicians to liberal causes. Martin goes out of the building to buy a pizza for them and Cosmos is arrested. Twenty years later, Cosmos has died in prison and Brice use the alias Martin "Marty" Bishop (Robert Redford) to run a company that tests security systems with the specialists Donald Crease (Sidney Poitier) that is a former CIA agent; the blind Irwin 'Whistler' Emery (David Strathairn) that is specialist in sounds; Darren 'Mother' Roskow (Dan Aykroyd) that is an awesome technician that believes in theories of conspiracy; and Carl Arbogast (River Phoenix) that is a young genius.

One day, the NSA agents Dick Gordon (Timothy Busfield) and Buddy Wallace (Eddie Jones ) visit Martin's office and he is blackmailed by them that know his real identity. They want that Martin and his crew retrieve a black box from Dr. Gunter Janek (Donal Logue), a mathematician that developed a cryptography system for the Russian government in a project called Setec Astronomy. In return, they would clear his name and give US$ 175,000.00 for Martin and his team. Martin asks his former girlfriend Liz (Mary McDonnell) to help him and soon they recover the box and deliver to the NSA agents. Soon Martin learns that he was lured by Dick and Wallace, and Janek that was murdered was working indeed for the National Security Agency in a system capable to break any computer encryption. Further, he has been incriminated in the murder of Janek and two other men and his only way out of the trap he is involved is recovering once again the black box.

"Sneakers" is an entertaining thriller with a promising beginning, good development and flawed and deceptive conclusion. Robert Redford and Ben Kingsley are too old for the role of two men that twenty years before were college students. It would be more logical to cast two actors of thirty and something years old. But they are great actors and the viewer may disregard this detail along the action and suspense of the movie. But the conclusion with the dangerous Wallace, Dick and Cosmos alive and free would be a constant threat for Martin and his team. NSA Director Bernard Abbott offers whatever they want and none of them request protection from Cosmos and the rogue agents. My vote is seven.

Title (Brazil) : "Quebra de Sigilo" ("Break of Secrecy")

Flawed but Entertaining

By: claudio_carvalho
In 1969, the idealistic hackers Martin Brice and Cosmos use the computer to transfer funds from conservative politicians to liberal causes. Martin goes out of the building to buy a pizza for them and Cosmos is arrested. Twenty years later, Cosmos has died in prison and Brice use the alias Martin "Marty" Bishop (Robert Redford) to run a company that tests security systems with the specialists Donald Crease (Sidney Poitier) that is a former CIA agent; the blind Irwin 'Whistler' Emery (David Strathairn) that is specialist in sounds; Darren 'Mother' Roskow (Dan Aykroyd) that is an awesome technician that believes in theories of conspiracy; and Carl Arbogast (River Phoenix) that is a young genius.

One day, the NSA agents Dick Gordon (Timothy Busfield) and Buddy Wallace (Eddie Jones ) visit Martin's office and he is blackmailed by them that know his real identity. They want that Martin and his crew retrieve a black box from Dr. Gunter Janek (Donal Logue), a mathematician that developed a cryptography system for the Russian government in a project called Setec Astronomy. In return, they would clear his name and give US$ 175,000.00 for Martin and his team. Martin asks his former girlfriend Liz (Mary McDonnell) to help him and soon they recover the box and deliver to the NSA agents. Soon Martin learns that he was lured by Dick and Wallace, and Janek that was murdered was working indeed for the National Security Agency in a system capable to break any computer encryption. Further, he has been incriminated in the murder of Janek and two other men and his only way out of the trap he is involved is recovering once again the black box.

"Sneakers" is an entertaining thriller with a promising beginning, good development and flawed and deceptive conclusion. Robert Redford and Ben Kingsley are too old for the role of two men that twenty years before were college students. It would be more logical to cast two actors of thirty and something years old. But they are great actors and the viewer may disregard this detail along the action and suspense of the movie. But the conclusion with the dangerous Wallace, Dick and Cosmos alive and free would be a constant threat for Martin and his team. NSA Director Bernard Abbott offers whatever they want and none of them request protection from Cosmos and the rogue agents. My vote is seven.

Title (Brazil) : "Quebra de Sigilo" ("Break of Secrecy")

great show

By: pearlgearl-772-761306
The movie is deeper than would be expected from a "spy"-type movie; it seems "cute" and "lighthearted". Hardly anybody gets killed, the characters are even endearing, and it seems to be nearly a spoof. The underlying theme, however, is one of balance--the establishment has "too much" and others have "not enough", an injustice Marty, and especially Cosmo, intend to right. The writers work that theme into the dialogue by balancing sentences and statements; "I cannot kill my friend. Kill my friend." The loss of trust is hinted at in lighting tricks, as well--hiding faces in shadow at specific moments.

The writers deserve a HUGE pat on the back for their realistic and sympathetic portrayal of a blind man. I would love to nominate David Strathearn as an "honorary blind man". He is shown reading Braille, although Braille literacy is quite low, unfortunately. That funny device with the "dancing dots" seen during the scenes where he is using a computer is a Braille display--still in use today by those who prefer Braille to an audible screen reader, which may not have been around in '92, either. While he is never seen using a cane or a dog, the circumstances in which he is seen walking would not lend themselves to cane travel. In their office, he would get around just fine without a cane; he knows where everything is. In Liz's apartment, it's just too cluttered with all their equipment to make a cane realistic. Instead, he walks slowly, touches walls etc. and gets around just fine. His blindness, is, indeed, even an asset to the team early on--when he realizes the black box is in the fake answering machine case. The sighted people see the answering machine and trust what their vision tells them without question; it takes the blind guy to go beyond the "picture" and use his other senses to figure out the truth.

Has dated well but a very 'light' thriller.

By: SmokeyTee
I thought this was a GREAT film when it released and saw it a few times - I guess I was 16 or so at the time.

Seeing it again it is a by-the-numbers caper film. James Horner's music sets the mood often over-the-top intense or super light "boy's adventure"...

There is a lot of 'humor' which is very light and usually very dry. I think this film, despite it's being a tricksy one is best for oldies who can keep up.

The story is a simple double caper setup - steal the goods and then steal them again except harder. But anyone watching will notice that for a bunch of crack security experts the characters behave a little stupidly...

Plot holes, occasional sub-par dialogue, out-of-place music and characters that are a bit dull this remains a solid, undemanding thriller.

" We were going to change the world Marty, what happened? "

By: thinker1691
This is a must film for fans who want to know if the world's secrets can be acquired through theft. The answer may surprise many including Officials who believe our Government is secure. This film is entitled " Sneakers " and is about a group of Cyber-specialists who advertise themselves as computer security experts. Their job is to test the encryption systems of various electronic based companies. In their youth, two college students (Jo Marr and Gary Hershberger) seeking to right the world's financial problems, break into a University system as a prank. Unfortunately they are detected and Marr is sent to prison. It is years later and Bishop (Robert Redford) is a legitimate security consultant who is kidnapped because he has stolen a 'Black Box' which can hack into the most secure and sensitive centers of the world. His team consists of other specialists like Donald Crease (Sidney Poitier) Erwin Emory (David Strathairn) 'Mother' (Dan Aykroyd) and River Phoenix as Carl. They have decided to take on the Government agents who are holding Bishop. The problem multiples when the C.I.A. takes an active interest as does Bishop's former friend who seeks his own bit of revenge. The movie is interesting and lively as the level of danger grows until everyone is in danger including the real U.S. government. Easily recommended as a wonderful, but serious film. ****

Light-Hearted Caper Film

By: treeskier802
I was drawn to Sneakers because I heard the story was of my favorite genre, a spy thriller. However, I found this movie to be more along the lines of a caper film.

Robert Redford is the leader of a team of experts who break into security systems so that institutions (such as banks) can see how good their system is. The team is made up of a diverse group: an ex-Cia agent (Portier) and three computer whizzes (Ackroyd, Phoenix, and the blind Stratharn). The group has great chemistry and often this leads to some fun humor.

Redford and his team are hired by the government (so they believe) to retrieve a black box that can decode encrypted computer firewalls. After retrieving the black box, the team finds themselves in dire trouble.

I was hoping the film would be more intense, yet Sneakers incorporates a lot of humor. It is a fun film and is enjoyable to watch, but if you are looking for a true spy film, then you may want to pass.

This film more closely resembles recent movies like Ocean's 11 or The Italian Job, popcorn films that have some laughs, some danger, and some suspense.

Redford is really great in this movie as is Straitarn; Mary McDonnell is also very good. Phoenix holds his own. Although far from their best roles, Poitier, James Earl Jones, Ackroyd, and Ben Kingsley are decent.

Overall an enjoyable film which incorporates computer hacking before it was mainstream. Rating 7 of 10 stars.

Light but striking

By: Framescourer
Despite its convincing (and occasionally frightening) espionagey twists it still contrives to be a fairly stock thriller. If you've seen Mission Impossible or, of course, Spy Game you've seen much of this film.

What really makes this it is the extraordinary, first class cast. Robert Redford almost makes it look too easy. That's because he's alongside the likes of Sidney Poitier, Dan Ackroyd and David Strathairn (he of Good Night And Good Luck almost-Oscar fame) all doing stalwart, professional Hollywood duty. This means entertaining. They're serious, dramatic and glibly comic when it is meant to be funny.

The result is a slick and entertaining movie, despite its following the thriller rails. Well made popcorn accompaniment. 5/10

Clicheed, forced, heavy-handed - barely enjoyable

By: mihai_s
I fail to see why this movie has a decent rating. While it has the basic recipe for an enjoyable movie (strong cast, good premise, quirky characters), the movie is often predictable, the technological stuff makes no sense sometimes (even for computers of that time), a lot of characters are unbelievably clichéd (like the conspiracy-theorist on the team, which does basically nothing besides play his minor part in pulling their various heists or deliver conspiracy theories one-liners - supposedly to provide some comic relief). At times, the script is illogic (Redford needs the woman he brings on the team so badly why exactly?, and a team of con and tech artists does not take the least precaution to make sure people are who they say they are - I could see all the 'twists' a mile away). Sometimes, the movie has the believability and humor of a B-grade teen movie (such as the 'date' she goes on with the "mark"). Even when we get to the core of the movie (the tech they employ to plan and execute a heist), there is nothing really interesting or novel. All in all, a movie that tries to be tech-savvy, suspenseful, funny and make you ask some questions, but is riddled with believability and logic holes, very little humor, and terribly clichéd characters (plain cartoony at times). 5/10 (partially enjoyable - only watch if you've got nothing better to do)

From the guy who did Field of Dreams comes a much better movie about code breaking and stuff.

By: schmimic
Starring: Robert Redford, Dan Akroyd, Ben Kingsley, Sidney Poitier, River Phoenix, Mary McDonnell, David Straithairn This movie is just so good, it's almost hard to sum up the greatness in a review. At one point this was basically my favorite movie, but now it's just one of my favorite movies. It still gets a place on the mantel.

The movie starts with a young Marty and Cosmo back in 1969 doing some early computer hacking. They're busily transferring money from those who have it to those who need it. Example, taking from Richard Nixon's personal checking account and giving it to the Association of Legalized Marijuana. Truly, Robin Hoods. But then Marty gets hungry, so he heads out for pizza. When he gets to the van and tries to start it, flashing lights appear outside, head upstairs, and haul Cosmo away. Marty runs, and then it fades to present day, which when the movie was made, was 1992.

Martin Brice (Redford) now goes by the alias of Martin Bishop. He has an interesting job. As a bank teller says, "So you get hired to break into other people's places, to make sure nobody can break into their places?" In the team is a blind sound expert who goes by the name of Whistler (Straithairn), an electronics expert who goes by Mother (Akroyd), a teenager named Carl (Phoenix), and an ex-CIA agent, Donald Crease (Poitier).

One day they get some clients who walk in with a long list of information on all the people in Bishop's team. The only person they don't have info on is Martin Bishop. They then identify themselves as NSA, tell Bishop that they know his real identity, and ask to meet with them again for a special assignment. That assignment is to steal a little black box from some mathematician. Bishop's crew doesn't know what the box does, so they accept the offer. As part of the deal it pays $175,000, and they'll clear Bishop's record.

Once they have the box, they fiddle around with it a little and discover that it is actually a sophisticated code breaker that can hack American encryption systems. But when they are getting ready to give it to the NSA guys, they find out that Dr. Janek, the mathematician, has been murdered. At this point it's kind of hard to not wonder how important the box is, but unfortunately, the box is already in the NSA's hands before they find out about Janek, and so they drive away with no money and no little black box.

It's around this point where the plot of the movie really takes off and it gets very interesting. I'm not going to say much else. You'll just have to watch it for yourself and see.

Bottom Line: 4 out of 4 (own this movie)

Guilty Pleasure

By: Rushmore_Elite
There are a bunch of movies which might not be GREAT, but really good, and you can watch them over and over again. Rainy day movies. "Sneakers" is without a doubt such a movie.

It is a lightweight caper which gets into a higher division thanks to the acting: Redford is always good, as is Strathairn, Kingsley and McDonnell. The other actors do a really good job as well, but these four stand out in my opinion.

There are twists and turns in the script, Great San Francisco locations and lots of underplayed humor in this film, all contributing to that the movie can be seen several times.

Take it for what it is, and you'll have a really good time in front of the TV.

Fun, engaging flick

By: imdb-5765
Mostly overlooked and underrated this is a fun and engaging movie about a group of free-lance computer crackers, hackers, conspiracy theorist and others with geek/spy cred from diverse backgrounds, all with secrets and pasts of their own. The fun that ensues when they become ensnared in something much bigger than they opted for is too good to miss.

My only slight quibble is that the move borrows one gag wholesale (right down to the geese party) from the Rock Hudson movie Blindfold without referencing it in any way. One of the characters could have mentioned that movie at an appropriate point. But don't let that detract from your enjoyment. Too much good fun to miss.

The last good hacking movie

By: tek-9
I was saddened that this movie had such a low rating. I've watched it many, many times over the years, and it continues to entertain. It is, perhaps, the last good "hacker" film (well, 23 (1998) also comes to mind, but that isn't widely available in English).

The math is believable (Janek's lecture makes sense), as is the technology (except for the Hollywood-ish decryption displays -- but that's forgivable). The characters are among the most realistic in any of these movies (with the exception of Joey the lamer in Hackers (1995) -- most accurate character in a hacking movie I've seen yet). They're each composites of well-known people from the 80s security scene. The techniques they use are the techniques of the business, especially in that era.

Now that computers have become such a big thing, I don't think it would be possible for Hollywood to produce another movie like this. Anything made now would have to be far more glamorous and unrealistic.

What's this movie got, if you don't care about any of that stuff? It's tremendously funny, cleverly written (every scene works overtime to say and do more than one thing), and beautifully shot and scored. (The opening scene and transition is wonderful) The acting is priceless. I've never met someone who didn't love this film. See it.

thoroughly enjoyable

By: mattkratz
I loved this movie! With terrific performances all around, so will you. Great action and suspense, as well as great writing, will keep you hooked. One of Mr. Redford's finest films, and a terrific plot. Anyone who is interested in computers will get a kick out of it, and watching them go through the motions is a pleasure.

*** out of ****

How do I join?

By: dylanhydes
I resent another IMDB user's assumption that anyone who likes this movie has got to have an IQ of 2. What exactly does that mean? I am an intelligent moviegoer and I loved Sneakers. And I know others who are much more intelligent than me and some who I would even guess are certifiable geniuses who also loved this movie.

This movie is captivating. As other people have written, Sneakers can be watched over and over again. Its a suspense thriller that doesn't try to blind you with so many special effects that you lose sight of the fact that less than five minutes was used to create and edit the script (ie. Mission Impossible 2).

This is a fun movie for anybody who is a team player. Its very entertaining to see how each member of Redford's team brings an essential element to the task at hand. There are a couple of scenes where some things are far fetched, but nothing outside the rhelm of possibility. There is nothing that makes you groan in disgust, as if say you were watching any scene in a John Woo film. For a movie like this to work it has to be believable, and this is believable.

Sneakers is original in its ideas and the characters are very likable. Even the villian possesses qualities that make you like him. Each character is developed enough so that by the end of the movie you want to be a part of the team. Its just that much fun to watch. 10/10

How do I join?

By: Dylan
I resent another IMDB user's assumption that anyone who likes this movie has got to have an IQ of 2. What exactly does that mean? I am an intelligent moviegoer and I loved Sneakers. And I know others who are much more intelligent than me and some who I would even guess are certifiable geniuses who also loved this movie.

This movie is captivating. As other people have written, Sneakers can be watched over and over again. Its a suspense thriller that doesn't try to blind you with so many special effects that you lose sight of the fact that less than five minutes was used to create and edit the script (ie. Mission Impossible 2).

This is a fun movie for anybody who is a team player. Its very entertaining to see how each member of Redford's team brings an essential element to the task at hand. There are a couple of scenes where some things are far fetched, but nothing outside the rhelm of possibility. There is nothing that makes you groan in disgust, as if say you were watching any scene in a John Woo film. For a movie like this to work it has to be believable, and this is believable.

Sneakers is original in its ideas and the characters are very likable. Even the villian possesses qualities that make you like him. Each character is developed enough so that by the end of the movie you want to be a part of the team. Its just that much fun to watch. 10/10

Interesting hacker movie for its time

By: Mike-DD
Given that this came out in 1992, the level of technology in it is amazing. I watched this twice, the latest in 1999, and still am amazed at some of the things they can do with computers. Of course, some hacking techniques are commonplace and outdated now, but it is still engrossing to see these acts in action.

Watching it a second time gives you a sense of perspective though. Back then, to think that a chip that can control the world was preposterous, but now, with almost everything microchip-controlled, and the ubiquity of the Internet, that thought is not too farfetched.

Talking in movie terms, this ranks as one of the better ones that center around computers. There is some solid acting, and though there are sub-plots within the main plot, they do not grow so much so as to overwhelm the main storyline, which is basically a group of men hired to find the chip-that-controls-everything.

This movie is pure top-notch entertainment!

By: joey-47
Never will you see such a complex movie as much fun as this one. I've read other comments which have said that they aren't really sure why this movie is so contagiously enthralling, and I can't figure it out either. Maybe its because that rarely is such a stellar cast brought together where the chemistry is almost flawless. Or maybe its because the movie succeeds in having each character come into their own while they work perfectly together as a team. Whatever the reason, this movie is filled with great performances, many classic lines and performances, and a good mix of laughs and suspense to keep you interested the entire way through.

I wil have a website launching soon at www.favoritefilm.com where people can write about anything and everything to do with their favorite films, and this movie is already, rather high on the list.

Favorite movie, along with American Beauty

By: calgar99
Great acting, great cast, great effects, great plot. This movie has it all...suspense, twists, and a little action. Even a small bit of romance. I've watched the movie a zillion times, every time picking something new out of it. Lately I've found a few mistakes in it, the latest being a scene where a headlight burns out in one camera angle scene and not in another... but that's another story. If you like adventure movies, this one's for you!

An endlessly watchable movie. 10/10

By: Tim Gomersall
This film is the one film of the nineties which I can watch again and again without getting bored. That's not to say it's the best, no no no, but there's something about this movie which I just can't get enough of. It's easily the most frequently used tape in my limited video library.

Mainly it's the cast; quality names down the length of the list, and each one, from Robert Redford heading the motley crew of good guys (Dan Ackroyd and Sidney Poitier especially good) to Ben Kingsley as a deliciously cool but insecure villain. They're all clearly having such a good time as they're making the movie that you can't help but join them; it's infectious.

It's also surprisingly timeless. Seven years have passed since this movie came out, which is a long time in the gadget world in which this film is based, but none of their equipment or techniques (except a brief glimpse of a now outdated version of Windows but that's REALLY nitpicking) seem out of date; it could still be today.

And then there's the moments. This is a film based on a whole load of brilliantly memorable moments. When they find out what the mysterious black box actually does, it's truly chilling. All the little tricks of their trade on display are each a delight, from setting off fire alarms to being on the other end of the phone when the fire service is subsequently called. And the ending, in my opinion, is one of the most satisfying, and hilarious, conclusions ever captured on film.

In case you hadn't noticed, I love this movie. A great score, a great cast, and a whole lot of fun. Whether you got to these comments because you want to know if this film was worth seeing, or whether a training shoe web-search somehow ended you up here against your will, you really should see this film. It's a hugely entertaining piece of the nineties. And Robert Redford has done nothing better since.