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Argo DVD 
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Based on real events, the dramatic thriller Argo chronicles the life-or-death covert operation to rescue six Americans, which unfolded behind the scenes of the Iran hostage crisis, focusing on the little-known role that the CIA and Hollywood played--information that was not declassified until many years after the event. On November 4, 1979, as the Iranian revolution reaches its boiling point, militants storm the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, taking 52 Americans hostage. But, in the midst of the chaos, six Americans manage to slip away and find refuge in the home of Canadian Ambassador Ken Taylor. Knowing it is only a matter of time before the six are found out and likely killed, the Canadian and American governments ask the CIA to intervene. The CIA turns to their top "exfiltration" specialist, Tony Mendez, to come up with a plan to get the six Americans safely out of the country. A plan so incredible, it could only happen in the movies.Extra Content
• Rescued from Tehran: We Were There -- President Jimmy Carter, Tony Mendez and the actual house guests recount the real-life harrowing experience they endured.
Set against the Iranian hostage crisis of 1979 and 1980, Ben Affleck’s Argo is a nerve-jangling footnote to the birth of Ayatollah Khomeini’s Islamic Republic. The movie opens at the crest of the 1979 revolution--the storming of the US embassy in Tehran, and the escape of six diplomats to the precarious safety of the Canadian ambassador’s residence. To the rescue is Tony Mendez--a composed CIA agent whose heroism remained classified until 1997--and his state-approved plan to get the stranded embassy staff out of Iran under a brazen cover story: they’re an innocent film crew on a location hunt for the fake sci-fi blockbuster Argo. Hollywood is usually pressed into the service of the state in the name of comedy (either burying dictators in Team America: World Police or just bad news in Barry Levinson’s Wag the Dog), but Argo is a true story, and the tone of Affleck's Oscar-winning script is carefully split, switching between mounting tension in consular Tehran and a satire of the Hollywood machine as fronted by Alan Arkin and John Goodman--two raffish producers hired by Mendez to reverse-engineer some convincing buzz for the Argo movie. Affleck himself takes the role of Mendez, the steady-eyed agent betting everything on Hollywood’s age-old efficiency at creating a media circus for a project long before it exists. ‘History starts out as farce and ends up a tragedy’, remarks Goodman, but Argo ends on a patriotic upbeat, and doesn’t reflect much on history. It politely nods at the context of Iran’s attitude to the West, and we’re told about but not shown--bar the blank rage of the revolutionary mob--Iran’s anger at the Westerly flow of resources under Shah Pahlavi. Instead, Argo concentrates on the eggshell complexities of deception in plain sight, including a climactic set-piece in which Mendez’ team must fend their way through layers of suspicious Iranian airport security--with imminent capture, execution and political calamity only on the other side of their paper-thin pretext. It may have the ring of historical escapism, but Argo holds its nerve as a great Hollywood escape. --Leo Batchelor
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