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Zero Dark Thirty (2012)

Review of the movie Zero Dark Thirty

From the moment Zero Dark Thirty starts you know you will be subjected to tough material to watch. With nothing on the screen you hear the panicked calls made from the WTC on 9/11. It is still unsettling to hear and it sets the mood, your mind preparing itself for anything, knowing the movie is based on first hand accounts of actual events. As a viewer you see the circumstances in which suspected terrorists are questioned, all to find the most wanted man in the world, Osama Bin Laden. Directed by Kathryn Bigelow, who previously was responsible for the Hurt Locker again deals with a realistic depiction of war, the war on terror.

Jessica Chastain is Maya, a young CIA agent who has decided to go to Pakistan to do some field work. That field work includes torture and it initially shocks her to see how the people who are held captive are treated. The interrogators can be kind one moment, but very disrespectful the next. All because they want to have some information which might lead them to Osama Bin Laden. Maya is determined to reach that goal and spends years following several leads, talking to captured terrorists and watching video footage. It’s a tough job especially since several terrorist attacks take place (for example the bombing of a bus in London).

This movie takes the viewer behind the scenes and shows the way the CIA worked in order to retrieve information. Tactics which are controversial (like waterboarding or putting dog collars on prisoners) and I’m sure this movie will lead to some more controversy. It also shows the raid on Osama Bin Laden’s compound and it is the closest thing anyone will ever come to experiencing it. It feels extremely realistic as the special forces move in you are right there with them, seeing everything with headmounted cameras, slowly working their way up to the top of the complex.

Jessica Chastain gives a great performance and will probably get an Oscar nomination for it. Her character is determined and knows how to use the knowledge she has to get things done. The movie has a couple of shocking moments giving it the same rawness The Hurt Locker also had. If you kept up to date with the news you know what will happen, but having heard about it and experiencing them are two different things. An important movie which can’t be missed. Check out your local cinema listings to see where this movie is playing near you.

  • Keith says:

    Lucky!!! It still hasn’t opened here and I’m having a fit to see it. You’ve heightened my enthusiasm!

    January 7, 2013 at 3:06 pm
    • Nostra says:

      Happy to do so. Hope you’ll like it as much!

      January 7, 2013 at 8:48 pm
  • ckckred says:

    I’m really excited to see this film. I was a big fan of The Hurt Locker, and this looks great. Nice review.

    January 7, 2013 at 3:58 pm
    • Nostra says:

      It is, thanks!

      January 7, 2013 at 8:48 pm
  • filmhipster says:

    Cool, hope I can get to the theatre this week or next to check this out. It’s such a controversial story and all over the news right now. I’m glad you liked it.

    January 7, 2013 at 9:42 pm
    • Nostra says:

      Is the controversy about the torture? Interested to see what you think of it.

      January 7, 2013 at 10:39 pm
  • Mark says:

    History has already shown how this mission ends. Yet that doesn’t lesson the tension or excitement. It’s telling that despite the fact that we know this was a success, we are still fascinated by the way it unfolds.

    January 8, 2013 at 11:16 am
    • Nostra says:

      Exactly, couldn’t say it any better myself.

      January 8, 2013 at 9:28 pm
  • Tim The Film Guy says:

    Spelled Thirty wrong :D
    Good review, bad spelling

    January 8, 2013 at 8:46 pm
    • Nostra says:

      Thanks for pointing it out, have corrected it!

      January 8, 2013 at 9:27 pm
      • Tim The Film Guy says:

        Your welcome :D
        Got the damn gravatar thing working finally :D

        January 10, 2013 at 5:36 pm
  • ruth says:

    Gonna see this on Thursday. I’m very curious about this one though I know it’s gonna be a tough watch. Seems like not everyone love it, but glad you find a lot of things to appreciate Nostra. We’ll see where I’d end up.

    January 9, 2013 at 8:33 pm
    • Nostra says:

      Interested to see what you make of it. I don’t know if where you live has any effect on what you think of the movie.

      January 10, 2013 at 7:41 am
  • Griff says:

    Nice review. I really enjoyed this one as well. Chastain was a force to reckoned with in this movie and I thought this might have been the best performance I have seen from Jason Clarke.

    January 15, 2013 at 5:58 am
    • Nostra says:

      Thanks Griff. Yeah, she was great to watch. I can’t remember seeing Clarke in anything else, but he really impressed me here.

      January 16, 2013 at 7:30 am

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