6.8/10
9,765
57 user 28 critic

The Falcon and the Snowman (1985)

The true story of a disillusioned military contractor employee and his drug pusher childhood friend who became walk-in spies for the Soviet Union.

Director:

John Schlesinger

Writers:

Robert Lindsey (book), Steven Zaillian
1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Bad Boys (1983)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Chicago crime kid Mick O'Brien is sent to reform school after accidentally killing a rival's kid brother.

Director: Rick Rosenthal
Stars: Sean Penn, Reni Santoni, Jim Moody
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

In 1978 Pennsylvania, an absentee father is reacquainted with his estranged teenage sons who become intrigued with his romanticized life of crime.

Director: James Foley
Stars: Sean Penn, Christopher Walken, Mary Stuart Masterson
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

American judge in Germany must decide if the hijacking of an East German plane into West Berlin was justified.

Director: Leo Penn
Stars: Martin Sheen, Sam Wanamaker, Max Gail
Colors (1988)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

An experienced cop and his rookie partner patrol the streets of East Los Angeles while trying to keep the gang violence under control.

Director: Dennis Hopper
Stars: Sean Penn, Robert Duvall, Maria Conchita Alonso
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

In 1942 California, two young men await induction into the U.S. Marines and say goodbye to their girlfriends.

Director: Richard Benjamin
Stars: Sean Penn, Elizabeth McGovern, Nicolas Cage
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The emotional intricacies of a polyamorous relationship between young artist Bob and his two lovers: a lonely male doctor and a frustrated female office worker.

Director: John Schlesinger
Stars: Peter Finch, Glenda Jackson, Murray Head
Summerspell (1983)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.7/10 X  

Family celebrations and tensions, Independence Day, Texas 1948

Director: Lina Shanklin
Stars: Louise Davis, Edna Wisdom, Vernon Lafon
F/X (1986)
Action | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A movie special effects man is hired to fake a real-life mob killing for a witness protection plan, but finds his own life in danger.

Director: Robert Mandel
Stars: Bryan Brown, Brian Dennehy, Diane Venora
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

The deputy manager of a London bank has worked out a way to rob the branch of £200,000. When he becomes involved with the attractive Lady Dorset he decides to go ahead with his plan. He ... See full summary »

Director: Peter Hall
Stars: Ursula Andress, Stanley Baker, David Warner
Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Renowned Russian piano teacher Irina Sousatzka gets a new student - Bengali piano prodigy Manek. They are both immigrants in the UK and bond quickly. When Manek's single mother's business fails, he must make a career decision.

Director: John Schlesinger
Stars: Shirley MacLaine, Navin Chowdhry, Peggy Ashcroft
The Innocent (1993)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A young engineer is sent to post World War II Berlin to help the Americans, in spying on the Russians. In a time and place where discretion is still a man's best friend, he falls in love ... See full summary »

Director: John Schlesinger
Stars: Isabella Rossellini, Anthony Hopkins, Campbell Scott
Action | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Baldy and King Kong shuttle between New Zealand and Hong Kong to recover a hi-tech prism that can impart superhuman powers

Director: Ringo Lam
Stars: Samuel Hui, Karl Maka, Sylvia Chang
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Timothy Hutton ... Christopher Boyce
Sean Penn ... Daulton Lee
Pat Hingle ... Mr. Charlie Boyce
Joyce Van Patten ... Mrs. Boyce
Rob Reed Rob Reed ... Boyce Child
Rob Newell Rob Newell ... Boyce Child
Karen West Karen West ... Boyce Child
Art Camacho ... Boyce Child (as Arturo Comacho)
Annie Kozuch ... Boyce Child
Richard Dysart ... Dr. Lee
Priscilla Pointer ... Mrs. Lee
Chris Makepeace ... David Lee
Dorian Harewood ... Gene
Mady Kaplan ... Laurie
Macon McCalman ... Larry Rogers
Edit

Storyline

The true story of Christopher Boyce, a young All-American man whose job as a guard for sensitive documents shatters his faith in his country and leads him to a sometimes comic, sometimes chilling sideline as a spy for the Soviets, aided by his scruffy buddy, Daulton; it can't last, though, and the consequences are tremendous for Boyce and his family. Written by Dan Hartung <dhartung@mcs.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

They came from the best of families. And they committed the worst of crimes. [Australia Theatrical] See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

UK | USA | Mexico

Language:

English

Release Date:

8 February 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Falcon & the Snowman See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$12,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,358,846, 27 January 1985

Gross USA:

$17,130,087

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$17,130,087
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Sean Penn went to Mexico and snuck into the Russian embassy as research for his role as Andrew Daulton Lee. See more »

Goofs

The buttons of a cipher lock pressed by Boyce make DTMF (telephone touch-tone) sounds, but in reality they only click when pressed. See more »

Quotes

[explaining how he met fellow traitor Daulton Lee]
Christopher Boyce: We were altar boys together.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Bully (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

China Grove
Written by Tom Johnston
Performed by The Doobie Brothers (as Doobie Brothers)
By Arrangement with Warner Special Products
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
The secret lives of the former altar boys
25 October 2005 | by jotix100See all my reviews

John Schelesinger's career as a film director was extraordinary. We had watched this film when it first came out, but wanted to see it again when it showed on cable recently. The film has a faded look, as one watches it today, but still, it is interesting because of the intense performances of the two principals.

If you haven't seen it, please don't read any further.

Chris and Daulton were two childhood friends that came from upper middle class backgrounds. Chris went to enter a seminary to be a priest, but gives up. Daulton became a small time drug user and trafficker. The two lives seem to run parallel as the pair become involved in an illegal activity that will prove their short sightedness. In fact, it shows how both young men miscalculate in their attempt to fool the CIA and the Soviet Union. These two, in a way, were so naive in thinking they could pull something that bigger, and better equipped people couldn't even imagine could be done.

Chris' motivation is legitimate, as he feels outraged in discovering the underhanded role of the agency for which he works in dealing with other nations, in this case Australia, something he finds by sheer coincidence. When he involves Daulton, we know the whole thing is doomed because no one into drugs, as he is, will ever amount to anything. In fact, Chris and Daulton had no conception of the scope of what they are trying to do, or its consequences.

Timothy Hutton was at this period of his career, an actor that was going places. He had proved he had talent with his work in other films, so it was a natural choice for Mr. Schlesinger to select him, a choice that pays off well. Sean Penn, also was a young actor who showed an intensity, like one hadn't seen before. In fact, at times, Mr. Penn, reminded us of a young Robert Mitchum in the making. Both actors' contribution to the film is incredible. One can't think who could have played this duo but them.

"The Falcon and the Snowman", while not up to the par with other great John Schlesinger's movies, is an interesting look to our not too distant past.


20 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 57 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed