Sunday, January 20, 2019

Review of "Sneakers," DVD version

Review of
Sneakers, DVD version

Five out of five stars
 The basic premise of this move is based on what most people who study potential apocalypses or global conflicts to be most likely. Our modern world is based on secure computer systems that are strongly encrypted in ways where nefarious characters will be unable to intercept and crack them. In this movie, a master mathematician has managed to create a device capable of decrypting even the most secure of codes, from that of the American Federal Reserve Banking system to the entire electrical grid. With this device, it would literally be possible to control or destroy the United States economy.
 Robert Redford plays Martin Bishop, a man that got his hacking start at a young age and avoided arrest simply because he was the one that went out for pizza. Bishop now leads an elite team of hackers that are hired to probe the security systems of companies and expose their weaknesses. The other members of the team are a former CIA employee, a gadget wizard, a blind soundman and a young genius. Bishop’s former girlfriend also aids the team in achieving their challenging goals.
 When the existence of the device becomes known, Bishop and his group are “recruited” to grab it, supposedly by government agents that want it for the government. It turns out that the recruiters are employed by a criminal group and they now have the power to hack into any American computer system. Once the deception is known, their goal is to get it back. To do that, they must get into an extremely secure building where there are guards armed with shotguns.
 The action is intense, suspenseful and unpredictable. Many things go right and then things go wrong as the team tries to save the world. While it will help if the viewer knows something about the modern world of data breaches and cybersecurity, that knowledge is not necessary for understanding the danger posed by hackers.
 Humanity faces many potential apocalyptic scenarios, from nuclear war to an asteroid strike. While there is always the danger of a global shooting war, the reality is that a major cyberattack is far more likely, and that requires the breaking of encryption codes. For this reason, as a computer expert, I really loved this movie.

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