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Thursday, Sep. 18, 2014

Zero Dark Thirty

Posted Sunday, January 27, 2013, at 7:37 PM

When I first got wind there was going to be a film made documenting the chase to apprehend Osama Bin Laden, I got a little worried.

I was worried that this attempt at documenting would take one political side, or the other, with the attempt at pushing a certain agenda.

After viewing the film, I was pleasantly pleased this was not the case.

Zero Dark Thirty is an edgy, gritty film that everybody needs to see.

The story is fairly straight forward, chronicling the chase for the world's most wanted man in various episodes, highlighting the major points throughout the chase.

The manhunt culminates in a heart-pounding raid on the complex that brought the chase to a halt.

Kathryn Bigelow does a wonderful job directing the film, making you feel like you're in the mix of the hunt for Bin Laden.

For a cast of actors that are for the most part unknowns, I was also pleased to see most everybody deliver.

While the film delivers a thriller-type story, you find yourself being attached to various characters who are continually hunting down any and every avenue to find the Al Qaeda leader.

When things start going awry, you'll find yourself asking the same questions that no doubt floated around the actual CIA analysts who were stationed around the world searching for Bin Laden, and that question is, "Do the ends justify the means?"

The real star of the film, though, is Jessica Chastain's portrayal of Maya, the woman who chased the Bin Laden for the better part of her adult life.

The emotion she brings to the screen is unparalleled. From her first moments on the screen, stepping into an enhanced interrogation, to the final scene where she breaths a sigh of relief and sheds tears of joy, her performance will be remembered as one of the better in the last 10 or so years.

I'd be remiss not to mention the inclusion of the enhanced interrogations, which don't hold anything back.

Bigelow has caught a lot of flack on the national scene for including them in the film without scolding the CIA and government officials for using said interrogations.

During many interviews, Bigelow has said she wanted to include them simply as they were reported to have taken place.

Needless to say, she succeeded in showing just how terrible of an act these interrogations were. Bigelow gets major props, from me anyways, for including them without clearly saying, "Hey, I approve of what we did," or, "I completely disagree 100 percent with what happened."

She simply included what was recorded in the reports.

So often with realistic military dramas, all you see are the battlefields and the soldiers who are in the line of fire.

This film shows a little of what we've seen in films, such as 'The Hurt Locker' and 'Black Hawk Down' but soars in showing the amount of intelligence work behind the men and women on the battlefield.

As I previously stated, it's sad that we have to celebrate the death of a man, but this is a film that everybody needs to see.

Politics aside, it shows chronicles the chase, kill, and capture of the world's No. 1 terrorist over the last 10 years.

Do yourself a favor, and go see it.

Score: 5/5


Comments
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No doubt it will be an interesting film. One of the reasons I did not pursue a law enforcement career was because of my inability to adhere to the limitations our folks are required to follow.

So I will not be shocked nor probably dismayed at any tactics used by our forces to extract information unless it is on innocent people. However, I am afraid there are not that many innocents within the world that they operate.

I hope that extremists will see the actors as just that, actors and not the actual men and women who conducted the hunt and capture. Some seem to be unable to separate fact from fiction.

-- Posted by stevemills on Mon, Jan 28, 2013, at 7:01 AM


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Chris Siers is sports editor of the Times-Gazette.
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