Zero Dark Thirty (2012)

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Director: Kathryn Bigelow
Cast: Jessica Chastain, Jason Clarke, Jennifer Ehle, Kyle Chandler, Mark Strong


An account of the decade-long search for Usama Bin Laden by the CIA, initially through torture of detainees, and focusing on the detection by one woman of a courier who may be one of a trusted inner circle.

The Review

Sober, forensic chronicle of events that went unreported at the time for obvious reasons; the film drew critical flack for its apparent endorsement of aggravated interrogation methods as ends-justifying, and evidence of an anti-islamic slant in US films of the period. It is what it is, a thorough-going, unmediated look into the lives of the team employed to implement the Bush mandate, with precious little in the way of genre dynamics or personalities emoting. The final tear on the cheek of protagonist Maya - whether physical exhaustion or moral panic - is ultimately in the eye of the beholder.