Review in a Hurry: Tense, understated and often funny spy thriller about a real-life CIA traitor. It gets under your skin and bares Ryan Phillippe's soul for all to see.

The Bigger Picture: Director Billy Ray seems to have a thing for opaque bad guys. Fortunately for the audience, Ray doesn't seem to fancy himself a psychologist. His earlier oddball exposé Shattered Glass never "explained" exactly why journalist Stephen Glass would be such a lying freak. And Breach is Glass—on a grander scale with a bigger budget.

The good news is that true to form, Ray doesn't pretend to have figured out his subject here, Robert Hanssen (Chris Cooper), the American spy who leaked classified information to the KGB for years before being caught in February 2001.

The story begins with cocky aspiring federal agent Eric O'Neil (Phillippe) being given a weird assignment: follow around a creepy higher up. Oh yeah, the creep is also a sexual deviant and religious fanatic.

This is the most vulnerable we've seen Phillippe; he doubts his abilities, he quivers when Hanssen questions his intelligence, calls his bluffs and he rages when his boss (Laura Linney) won't let him in on what's really going on here.

When he finally learns that the man who's come to grown on him is actually a traitor, O'Neill stiffens up but does his job. The suspense that ensues is refreshingly understated. Instead of a car chase, we get a gridlock. Instead of a gunfight, we get a battle of wills, where the gun is almost incidental.

Breach is also pure fun, with far more comedic payoff than your average sitcom. The jokes about "women in pantsuits" resonate best. You'll be on the edge of your seat...with your legs crossed in that statesman sort of way.

The 180—a Second Opinion: Breach haters will tell you that brown hair does not make someone believable as genius undercover agent type, and they'll curse this brooding Phillipe. They will then cry foul about dull visuals and meandering themes and go see a real acshun movie.

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