Over the course of a career that now stretches nearly as long as J.F.K’s life span, Oliver Stone has been relentlessly driven to make movies with real world impact, and his latest venture, Snowden, is a story for our times. In many ways, it’s the story of our times.
On the surface Snowden is certainly a movie about its title character, Edward Snowden, who unveiled a secret mass surveillance program that even Congress was unaware of. But more broadly, it’s about the labyrinth of digital surveillance we now find ourselves lost in and the roiling cyber-warfare that’s constantly being waged behind our screens that most are blissfully unaware of.
Last week, Stone joined BitTorrent's Jeremy Johnson from Europe over video-call for a conversation on digital privacy as an essential civil right, how the centralization of the internet has enabled a select few to wreak mass digital havoc, the frightening state of cyber-warfare and much more.
Stone’s movies have always been at their most powerful when they draw connections between the world we see and the world of truth, and in conversation he possesses the same ability to weave together the past, present and future.
Stone connected the current state of cyber-warfare and America's believed Stuxnet virus strike against Iran to Truman’s decision to unleash the first atomic bomb, both instances when U.S. leaders set off a global arms race by striking with a weapon that others adopted and then turned against the U.S.
“This is what the German government offered their people in 1933, and this is what 1984 was about, too,” said Stone, delving into his belief that governments have long convinced people to give up their personal rights in the name of protection.
Snowden is in theaters now, and BitTorrent Now users can get even more clips and extras from the film via the Snowden bundle.