Sunday, January 20, 2013

Zero Dark Thirty: Kill Bin

Kathryn Bigelow's new movie begs comparisons with Ben Affleck's latest flick — Argo. Both are based on true stories. Both have endings moviegoers know. One is a rescue mission and the other an operation to kill.

Of the two, Argo is the superior flick. As the Movie Slut wrote in her glowing review, this was an edge-of-your-seat thriller, even though we knew the end. Not so much with ZDT.

The assassination of Osama bin Laden, if Bigelow's account is factual, was the result of intelligence gathered by "enhanced interrogation techniques" and the obsessive perseverance of one CIA Operative, a woman named Maya (Jessica Chastain.)

The emphasis on the torture of prisoners has made the film controversial, and well it should be. This  aspect of the movie dominated the first quarter of the 2-hour and 37-minute film. (At least it seemed that long. Or longer.) In one scene, President Obama is seen on television denying that our government employs torture even as moviegoers witness it. This kind of heavy-handed editorializing is distracting in a movie about the brilliantly orchestrated and executed operation that took out the mastermind of the World Trade Center destruction and resulting loss of innocent lives.

Later in the film, Bigelow may have been bogged down by the back-and-forth of real-live events that led up to the successful mission, taking away from what should have been a suspenseful story arc. But that's just the MS's opinion. Many critics wrote more positive reviews and ZDT was nominated for a best picture Oscar.  

1 comment:

David Elpern said...

Great review of an average, but excessively 'hyped' film. I actually fell asleep watching it and found the dialogue sophomoric and anemic.