Monday, November 12, 2012

Argo: A Story Crazier than Science Fiction


              I went into Argo, Ben Affleck's film about the real-life rescue of 6 American fugitives from Iran, with high expectations.  The film has already received huge praise and is an earlier contender in the race for the Oscars.  I wasn't disappointed.  The film was highly entertaining, informative, and unique.  It's a lesson in history from a certain lens and light. Affleck not only directed Argo, but he also starred in it as Tony, a CIA agent who uses a fake sci-fi movie to help save six hostages who are hunted during the Iran Hostage Crisis.  As a 1990's baby, the events of the end of the seventies and early eighties were foreign to me.  I was happy to be introduced to the conflict in such an engrossing way.  Even though I had somewhat of an idea of the outcome of the events, Affleck maintains the tension, keeping me as a viewer at a constant state of worry and anticipation.  Brian Cranston has a meaty scene as Jack, a CIA agent, as does Alan Arkin as a Hollywood player who helps in the elaborate ruse.
         Where Affleck really showed his strength was in his ability to really create the emotions of the 6 hostages.  Affleck had the actors live together in a 70's style to put them more in the mood of the film, and it really shows.  The film had an authenticity to it, which is key when it is based on the unbelievable true story.
         That's the real greatest of the film.  It is based on the crazy truth covered up until Clinton released it to the public.  Even in the last moments of the film, you can't believe the CIA, and particularly Tony pulls off the impossible.
           While Argo is not a film I would watch over and over again, I would certainly recommend it as a good film about a truly great story.

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