Basically the movie is about helping a group of six Americans escape Iran. IMDB gives a better synopsis,
In 1979, the American embassy in Iran was invaded by Iranian revolutionaries and several Americans are taken hostage. However, six manage to escape to the official residence of the Canadian Ambassador and the CIA is eventually ordered to get them out of the country. With few options, exfiltration expert Tony Mendez devises a daring plan: to create a phony Canadian film project looking to shoot in Iran and smuggle the Americans out as its production crew. With the help of some trusted Hollywood contacts, Mendez creates the ruse and proceeds to Iran as its associate producer. However, time is running out with the Iranian security forces closing in on the truth while both his charges and the White House have grave doubts about the operation themselves. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (firstname.lastname@example.org)
But out of the normal action-suspense films, the film’s lack of explosives and death-defying stunts is completely glorified by its unique plot of saving the hostages. It is based on a true CIA story that has been declassified in 1997 by former President Clinton. It’s very riveting and the last scenes were really nail-biting–as Anna G. puts it, “it made my heart stop beating for a while”
“There are only bad options and we just have to choose the best one”
I like this scene where they were arguing on whether to go to the route of acting as international teachers biking towards the Turkish border or acting as film ensemble for the movie ARGO. They are presented with real bad options but they have to select the one that has higher chances of succeeding. If I were there (yeah seated beside CIA agents), I would choose based on the person who is going to execute it–or as some people call it: the Champion!
Tony Mendez: Or you could just send in training wheels and meet them at the border with Gatorade.
The film captured the actual emotion of people who are being held up at the immigration checkpoints. I know how it feels (but less tense and less drama) when I flew from Bangkok to Singapore, I wasn’t holding employment pass then AND I didn’t have my return ticket! I was lucky, my Singaporean colleague was there to “own” me. The camera shots of their faces, of the eyes and foreheads were at the right angle (don’t pretend Aldrin, you didn’t take any film directing course!) because these are the areas where it’s really difficult to feign when you’re lying.
There were alot of funny lines pertaining to “Westerners” such as:
John Chambers: So you want to come to Hollywood and and act like a big shot without actually doing anything?
Tony Mendez: Yeah.
John Chambers: You’ll fit right in.
John Chambers: How about ‘The Horses of Achilles’?
Lester Siegel: No good. Nobody does Westerns anymore.
John Chambers: It’s ancient Troy.
Lester Siegel: If it’s got horses in it, it’s a Western.
Tony Mendez: What’s your middle name? What’s your middle name? What’s your middle name? Shoot him, he’s an American spy!
There’s one scene where the soldiers, heavily armed as they are, were softened by the cartoon drawings. It felt for me like a reminder that we always have to keep that “kid” thing in us.
I felt that the movie isn’t siding only to the Americans, it gave a neutral narration of what happened during the Iranian revolution. In fact, I sympathize with the hatred of Iranians towards a foreign country that is harbouring and protecting a man who has killed people mercilessly.
The biggest surprise for me is that this is directed by Ben Affleck! He acted really good in the movie, but being the director is something more. I’ll give this movie 9/10 popcorns!
I’m happy I chose this over Breaking Dawn Part 2, but I’ll probably be watching the vampire movie next week, anyone interested to join? It’s during these times when you wish there’s a #linksavvy app that you can use (shameless plug!)
Enjoy the trailer below.