Weekly rewind: January 17
BY MICHAEL SMITH World Scene Writer
Thursday, January 17, 2013
1/17/13 at 4:58 AM
For expanded review, visit tulsaworld.com/movies.
"Zero Dark Thirty"
Rating: (on a scale of zero to four stars)
"Zero Dark Thirty" refers to a military term for 30 minutes past midnight, a dark hour indeed.
In the remarkable new film tracking the hunt for Osama bin Laden, there are many dark hours for us to consider, and many intelligence efforts operating in the shadows.
These range from the horrors of 9/11 and wars on multiple fronts to "enhanced interrogation techniques" and the finality of "getting our man."
Director Kathryn Bigelow and screenwriter Mark Boal, Oscar-winners for 2009's best-picture "The Hurt Locker," return to the war on terror to present a story based on the facts behind a decade-long manhunt.
The way in which they tell their story - in a form I would refer to as journalistic reality for cinema - ups the ante for viewers, who must search their personal morality meters by the conclusion and decide if the end result justified any compromises that were made in the name of seeking justice.
The story is focused on Maya (Jessica Chastain), a young CIA operative whose entire career has been based on finding bin Laden. She is in virtually every scene of the film, but we never quite know how Maya feels about anything beyond her passion for her mission.
Like a journalist writing an objective news story - or like a CIA spook - she doesn't tell us how she feels. During the first 20 or so minutes of the film, which can feel like a "how to torture suspects" tutorial at times, she expresses no moral judgment.
Instead, Boal - who was a freelance journalist embedded with troops in Iraq - and Bigelow dramatize the facts of the treatment of prisoners at places like Guantanamo in the manner of a journalist writing for his or her audience.
These are the facts. It's part of the story. Torture happened.
|Movie|| Rating (on 4 scale)|
|The Impossible|| |
|Zero Dark Thirty|| |
|Django Unchained|| |
|Wreck-it Ralph|| |
|Monsters Inc. 3-D|| |
|Not Fade Away|| |
|Silver Linings Playbook|| |
|Life of Pi |
|Rise of the Guardians|| |
|Hyde Park on Hudson|| |
|Les Miserables|| |
|Jack Reacher|| |
|Cirque du Soleil: Worlds Away|| |
|Twilight: Breaking Dawn, Part 2 |
|Gangster Squad|| |
|Promised Land|| |
|This is 40 |
|The Hobbit |
|The Guilt Trip |
— MICHAEL SMITH, NOUR HABIB and ROBERT EVATT, World Scene Writers
Jessica Chastain plays a member of the elite team of spies and military operatives who secretly devoted themselves to finding Osama bin Laden in "Zero Dark Thirty." Chastain won the Best Actress in a Drama Golden Globe for her role as Maya. Courtesy