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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Making a drama out of a crisis
There have been a lot of negative reviews of Zero Dark Thirty (2012) based on the real-life hunt for Osama bin Laden and those involved in the terrorist attacks by the al-Qaeda against citizens of the USA and other countries. I have to agree that the storyline seems to lack excitement in what should have been an exciting movie but I don't think it's fair to rubbish it...
Published 11 months ago by Valerie J.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not bad
More of a documentary for three quarters of the movie turning into a movie for the last 20 minutes, scenes of torture are difficult to watch not a movie i would watch again
Published 3 months ago by Happy chap


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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Making a drama out of a crisis, 1 Oct 2013
By 
Valerie J. (West Yorks, UK) - See all my reviews
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There have been a lot of negative reviews of Zero Dark Thirty (2012) based on the real-life hunt for Osama bin Laden and those involved in the terrorist attacks by the al-Qaeda against citizens of the USA and other countries. I have to agree that the storyline seems to lack excitement in what should have been an exciting movie but I don't think it's fair to rubbish it and possibly Kathryn Bigelow was trying to prevent the movie turning into one of those all too familiar gung-ho action/thrillers that seem to depart from reality with showers of explosions and buildings collapsing on a regular basis - not to mention car chases. While I admit I know little about what went on following the 9/11 attacks, I can well imagine that it took a lot of tedious investigation and frustration to obtain results; after all, they were dealing with fanatical and religious people who were willing to sacrifice themselves while bombing their victims, not people who would readily sell-out their grannies for a fiver.

Anyway, what do I know about it all except that I thought the movie was pretty decent - it came up to my expectations because I was expecting it to be more drama than action/thriller and so I wasn't disappointed. As for the torture scenes, they were no worse than you would see in many an action movie including James Bond movies.

I have no idea how much 'artistic license' was used in the making of Zero Dark Thirty (2012) but I thought Kathryn Bigelow did a fair job of it. Even so, the Oscar that it won in the 2013 Academy Awards ceremony was for Best Achievement in Sound Editing. The Oscar for Best Motion Picture of the Year (2012) went to Argo, another controversial movie.

I watched Zero Dark Thirty (2012) by way of Blu-ray which I bought online from Amazon.UK. It also came with Ultraviolet. Although the image was fine and the sound great, I was a bit nonplussed as to why, when I inserted the disc, I would get someone speaking to me in French, telling me (I think) to select my language of choice! Also, the symbols relating to the options for the disc were unfamiliar and so it was all a bit of guess-work. There were a few extras with the Blu-ray; the usual stuff about the making of the movie, about the history behind it, about the director and the main character played by Jessica Chastain.

VJ - Movies and Books World
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50 of 59 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Straightforward and Gritty with no glory hunting!, 11 Feb 2013
I have a lot of respect for film makers that are prepared to be brave. A gritty straightforward "docu film" about the biggest manhunt in history. We will never know what actually happened but this is the next best thing. There are no "hoowaahh" amercanisms either - just pinpoint detail.

It does contain torture scenes but these are nowhere near as bad as what you have been lead to believe. In fact Ive seen worse on a BBC Sunday night!

Very different to the Hurt Locker but if you liked that or other political docu films you will like this. The first 5 minutes of the film are probably the most provocative..and theres nothing on screen. Your just listening....

A Classic
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30 of 37 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars How to make a movie, 22 Mar 2013
By 
PJ Rankine (Wallington, Surrey United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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Why do people use their reviews to make political points or critise the actions of a third party? It doesn't matter what you think about waterboarding or the CIA, you're here to review a piece of fictionalised film making to give potential buyers an opinion.
That said I really enjoyed this film. It's no spoiler to say that the actual attack on Bin Laden's compound occupies the final half hour of a two and a half hour movie and when I realised how long the film was I did wonder how Katherine Bigelow was going to keep me interested.
Well she did it with a tense slow burning fuse of a movie based upon Jessica Chastain's character's obsession with killing Bin Laden. She goes from a fresh faced new recruit who turns her face away from torture to the a hard bitten professional spy. I felt her tears at the end were due to her realsing she had nothing left in her life following the success of the mission.
If your sort of movie doesn't progress beyong 'Die Hard' (which I love too) then you probbaly won't enjoy this film. If however you do like a good story with a superb cast performance then this could be for you.
If 'Die Hard' is the only type of movie you enjoy then don't bother fast forwarding to the end. The raid on the compound portrays professional soldiers and a job well done not gung ho trigger happy grunts.
The picture quality of the blu ray is superb and it has an excellent 5.1 audio track too.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An uncompromising film, 17 Jun 2014
By 
Jennie Lynch "Firefool" (West Yorkshire, UK) - See all my reviews
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Brutal, engrossing and morally challenging film. There has certainly been some controversy about the torture scenes and scope for discussion about whether the end does justify the means. However, the director does not portray the story as a simple fight between good and evil and shows an uncompromising snapshot of the realities of war.
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29 of 36 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars When the going gets tough - the tough dig their heels in, 4 Feb 2013
This review is from: Zero Dark Thirty [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
It's inevitable that comparisons will be drawn between Kathryn Bigelow's latest and Ben Affleck's surprise hit Argo (DVD + UV Copy), however suffice to say that as good as it is, the latter just can't match this for sheer balls-out tenacity - embodied, ironically, by Jessica Chastain's peerless CIA officer, Maya. By the film's denouement, Maya has spent her entire twelve year CIA career hunting Bin Laden, and upon her mission's eventual success (no spoiler as the film's based on real events), we see the massive sense of anti-climax through her eyes; a suitably passionate ending to a fine movie.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not bad, 1 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Zero Dark Thirty [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
More of a documentary for three quarters of the movie turning into a movie for the last 20 minutes, scenes of torture are difficult to watch not a movie i would watch again
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Average, pedestrian, 1 Dec 2013
By 
P. Osborne "P Osborne" (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Zero Dark Thirty [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
Alongside Argo, this film was a disappointment. Perhaps I should not look to Oscars as a recommendation. The direction was without style or verve. The story was pedestrian and only steps up a gear in 2 instances. The focus on the lead character is diverting - unworthy, when the character is 2 dimensional and not fully drawn. This would make a good TV movie but doesn't justify the plaudits because it dare's tackle a contentious subject. Maybe in the hands of a talented Director this could have been something else.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Turgid, 17 Aug 2014
This review is from: Zero Dark Thirty (DVD)
All American posturing. Leading lady far too pretty to convince, nothing special and pretty grim viewing
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's a nice movie, not a must see as I had ..., 4 Aug 2014
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It's a nice movie, not a must see as I had thought, but yes, it is worth the money and the watch.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I really wanted to like it more, 17 Sep 2013
By 
Dabbler - See all my reviews
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I think my biggest problem with this film is how long it is and also how long it takes to get going.

In a lot of films this is done to build dramatic tension but in this one I found it sadly lacking, at least for the first hour of this film. There is an event, a natural turning point after which the pace picks up, the last 30 mins or so are very good but I nearly didn't make it that far, I'm glad I held on.

I would have thought that you could have easily reduced the running time by about 20 mins and improving the timing somewhat.

The performances are OK but I can't really understand why Jessica Chastain was nominated for an Oscar for her role, then again I thought most of the nominations this year were a little poor.
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Zero Dark Thirty [DVD] [2012]
Zero Dark Thirty [DVD] [2012] by Kathryn Bigelow (DVD - 2013)
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