Rolling Stone - 10/01/1992
"...Lively, pertinent fun..."
Chicago Sun-Times - 09/09/1992
"...There are good qualities to the movie. The break-ins are directed with skill and imagination by Phil Alden Robinson, and his screenplay gives the characters some interesting things to say..."
Total Film - 08/01/2000
"...An enjoyable techno comedy romp..."
Two politically-minded whizkids pull off a daring computer caper in the Sixties, but, by a serendipitous twist of fate, only one of them gets caught. Twenty years later, the lucky half of that daring duo has set himself up in business as the leader of an oddball group of computer hackers who test security systems for big companies. But when agents from the NSA (National Security Agency) catch up with him, he must agree to send his team on a top secret, i.e. illegal, mission to recapture an invaluable decoding device. This powerful "black box" would allow anyone possessing it, including the Russians, the ability to access or alter whatever information they wanted to -- in the entire cyberspace galaxy. But things are not quite as they appear to be, and our aging hero soon realizes he must look into his own past to unlock the biggest secret of all.
A computer expert heads a team of renegade hackers who test security systems. His past comes back to haunt him when government agents blackmail the "Sneakers" into carrying out a covert operation: track down an elusive black box filled with national security secrets.
The "Sneakers" writing team of Phil Alden Robinson, Walter Parkes and Larry Lasker also wrote "WarGames" (1984). Their script for "WarGames" received an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Screenplay. The idea for "Sneakers" was first pitched in 1983. At that time Robinson had never directed a feature film, but by 1992, when he was slated to helm "Sneakers", he already had two directing credits under his belt: "In the Mood" (1987) and the surprise hit of 1989, "Field of Dreams".
Steve Grumette was credited as Computer Effects Supervisor on the film.
One of the last screen appearances for actor River Phoenix, who died in West Hollywood, California, age 23.
Former CIA agent John Strauchs worked with the screenwriters through twelve script rewrites, advising them on the most up-to-date technological innovations. He, like the character Martin Bishop, helps business and government secure both premises and computer secrets. He deliberately put mistakes in some of the film's information so as not to help "train" criminals.