Zero Dark Thirty (Bigelow, 2012)

Zero Dark Thirty (Kathryn Bigelow, 2012)

2012 is the year of disappointment for me, that’s for sure. I really thought this was going to be awesome. But lacking any real tone, mood, or cinematic atmosphere, it’s basically just a re-telling of the high points of the years heading up to Bin Laden’s death. As an American, I definitely found the movie easy to watch and the information interesting to know, but I wanted more. The film’s shining moment is the invasion on Bin Laden’s home which is extremely well done. Filmed intimately and beautifully, Bigelow does a great job of creating suspense especially considering everyone knows how it ends.

zero dark thirty

But, seriously, up to that point this was somewhat mundane (especially in regards to atmosphere). Jessica Chastain is one of the great actresses working today, but I can’t buy the praise for her here. Outside of the film’s closing scene, almost anyone could have portrayed this character considering she’s basically just a vehicle to help move us from one piece of information to the next. This isn’t the character study of a woman’s determination and inability to give up like I expected it would be; we’re kept at arm’s length, never allowed to see past the outer shell. I guess this could be to allow the film’s finale to be at its most poignant, but I’d rather have two hours of emotion than one scene.  7.25/10


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