Zero Dark Thirty- Review

It is safe to say that Military movies aren’t really my ‘thing’, despite the genre producing some of the best films of our time- including ‘Saving Private Ryan’ and ‘The Patriot’. However, with all the hype and appraisal the movie was receiving, I decided to venture down to the cinema once more (although there was a change of scenery as I did so in Cwmbran, South Wales) and see what all the fuss was about.

If you aren’t already aware, the film is about the 10 year hunt for Bin Laden directed by Kathryn Bigelow (The Hurt Locker probablyzero-dark-thirty being her most famous) and starring Jessica Chastain.

Jessica Chastain’s acting was phenomenal, despite knowing the ending of the film (unless you have been living in a cave for the past 20 months or so (coincidentally where they thought Bin Laden was hiding)) the suspense was still incredible. Throughout the film, you just wanted the protagonist, Maya, to find Bin Laden despite knowing the actual fate of the extremist.

Despite intense torture scenes (although if you are a Tarantino lover, this a slight walk in the park) the film is fantastic. This film is just short of 3 hours, and if you are expecting action throughout , similar to The Hurt Locker, you need to reevaluate. The film features intense amounts and scenes of interrogations, which personally, I find thrilling. It really shows the struggle of finding Bin Laden    The cinematography is beautiful, so hats of to you Kathyrn Bigelow.

The film is nail bitingly intense with gripping dialogue, especially the raid scene in which I found my heart racing whilst leaning on the edge of my seat. It really does place you right in the middle of the raid with the beautifully creepy surround sound chilling you. This film feels realistic and not fabricated like most of the biopics that are floating around these days. I also found out after (not so) intensive research that the name ‘Zero Dark Thirty’ is referring to the military term of half past midnight, so now I feel it is appropriately named.

The only criticism I could give it, is that similar to ‘Tinker, Tailor, Solider, Spy’, sometimes discoveries are not elaborated and jump occasionally, with a few character left unexplained.  As well as the score not being as triumphant as I hoped. It is also not entirely historically accurate with the torture methods of the CIA (or so they deny), and does have a bit of a propaganda feel to it. However, this is the only criticism I could find of this movie.

A genuine must-see, despite it being slightly propaganda. Filmed beautifully, with a great script, great acting and intense action. Congrats to you, Kathryn Bigelow. It is a powerful and accomplished piece of film that is chilling yet moving. A great blockbuster.

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