Oliver Stone’s political thriller about Edward Snowden has aired at the Toronto International Film Festival.
The US National Security Agency contractor is played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt. The film retells how Snowden controversially leaked information about extensive internet and phone surveillance done by US intelligence, before subsequently fleeing the country, aiming for South America but ending up having to stay in Russia.
Stone told a press conference: “It’s a detective story – it goes into something we don’t know. The government lies about it all the time and what they are doing is illegal – and they keep doing it. This is a very upsetting story but at the same time it’s a drama – it’s a great combination.”
Gordon-Levitt was more interested in the patriotism aspect of the film saying: “It shows two different kinds of patriotism – there’s the one where you’re allegiant to your country no matter what. You don’t ask any questions. But there’s another kind of patriotism that is what I really wanted to show. The kind that he grows into over the course of the nine years we see in this story, where he does ask questions. That’s the privilege of being from a free country like the United States of America.”
He hopes Obama will pardon Snowden so Snowden can face a fair trial, and that the film could help.
The Toronto International Film Festival ends on 18 September. Snowden is set to be released soon. Watch the trailer below: