Film Review: Argo (2012)

And the Oscar Goes to:

Argo, 2012

Directed by: Ben Affleck

Starring: Ben Affleck, Bryan Cranston, Alan Arkin, John Goodman

 

Argo is a historical drama film directed by, and starring, Ben Affleck (Shakespeare in Love), and is based on U. S Central Intelligence Agency operative Tony Mendez’s book The Master of Disguise about how the CIA used a fake sci-fi movie cover to help recover six U. S. diplomats who were stuck in a hostage crisis in Iran.

Admittedly not my favourite of the Oscar winners so far, Argo was still a very well put together film. Blending beautifully images of reality and film side-by-side (using real news reports from the time) meant we were going back and forth on the quality of the camera. The scenes were beautifully shot from both Iran and America, and seeing the scenes of Iranians burning American flags and hurling abusive chants at Americans really helped solidify how stuck those six diplomats were.

While Affleck’s performance was really good, I felt Alan Arkin’s (Going in Style) deserves special recognition, as Arkin’s inclusion brought on a really funny side to the film. While they were in Hollywood trying to set up the fake movie they criticised comically some of the sides to Hollywood’s movie business, and he, along with John Goodman (The Artist), really helped give a lighter tone to the film when it was needed.

The writing, the music and the suspense is all really well put together and that is a credit to Affleck, George Clooney and Chris Terrio. They blended a lot of the real-life events that happened, including the secret award Mendez received for his efforts, and passing on credit to the Canadians (their fake-movie was a Canadian film) before it became declassified until the late 90s. The only criticism I have of it is I believed it took too long setting up, and not enough time showing their struggles when in Iran,  but that’s simply nit-picking. Argo is a very good film, and one deserving of its Oscar win.

 

Plot: * * *

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Overall Rating: * * * ¾

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