Monday, June 17, 2013

Zero Dark Thirty

Finally got around to watching this. Overall? Pretty good, but a qualified good.

I’ve been waiting for this one a long time and maybe it’s the wait that affects my reaction to it. I liked the Hurt Locker so was looking forward to Bigelow’s next helming.

I remember feeling similarly about Lincoln. Kind of underwhelmed by what is still a pretty good movie. But one area where I felt Lincoln did a really good thing was not dwelling on the assassination and Lincoln’s death. It was there and could not be ignored but was also not the story being told.

ZDT is similar in that the story is really the run-up to the killing of bin Laden – not the actual killing etc.

And the story is well-told and interesting if perhaps a little long. It wasn’t until we were watching awhile that we realized this is a 2 hr. 30min+ movie. And it began to feel like it.

At the end (SPOILER ALERT!) when they get bin Laden, that whole sequence seemed drawn out and almost lame to me. Maybe I’m too used to slam-bang action that moves really fast. I had way too much time to think during this sequence and too many questions. Why did no one hear the crash of the helo? Seems like everyone in the compound would have heard that and begun evasive measures. And maybe I missed a detail or two but there were a bunch of Seals left behind after the first helo left with the body. How did they get out and away from the compound? I may have just been so tired by that time as to have missed the obvious. One more observation – I think I heard that Obama and others were watching the operation in real-time back in DC. But the only reactions we see during the op are Maya’s while she watches from her spot in nearby Afghanistan.

I guess we know how it ends and the Seals are not going to reveal their trade secrets but either rock-it-up a little or play it down. This just seemed kind of … weak.

Not sure what the ending’s point was – Maya as the sole passenger on a big cargo-type place. Symbolic? I can see her not being all “high-fivey.” I’d imagine after spending years of your life on something, it’s a let-down when it finally happens, when you get what you want. For some folks the chase is what it’s all about. Then the inevitable, “now what?”

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