There is something frustrating about seeing a movie listed on a critic’s top ten list that is not yet playing in theaters and, in fact, will not be coming to them until January. Selected movies are only released in New York and Los Angeles in order to qualify for award season. While Miami is a major metropolitan city in the U.S., we still have to wait for major movie releases. However, the wait time to see “Zero Dark Thirty” from Oscar winning director Kathryn Bigelow is finally over!
For those who don’t know, “Zero Dark Thirty” is about the decade long hunt for Osama bin Laden after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The movie focuses on one government agent named Maya (Jessica Chastain) who is working within the CIA.to oversee almost all aspects of the operation. Her responsibility is to do whatever it takes to get information from other terrorists, right up to when the SEAL team goes in to take out bin Laden once and for all.
“Zero Dark Thirty” has been getting plenty of press outside of being a favorite of movie critics, most notably for its scenes of torture. What you may have read or heard is true. Those scenes are very intense and feel quite authentic. It’s not meant to be viewed by the squeamish. Bravo to all the actors involved in those scenes and to Kathryn Bigelow. They could not have been easy to shoot any more than it is to watch. Waterboarding, sleep deprivation and humiliating tactics are all portrayed in this movie.
Bigelow was the first woman to ever win the Oscar for Best Director for her work on “The Hurt Locker” and some wondered why she followed that with another war movie. To start, “Zero Dark Thirty” is not a war movie. It’s a powerful drama that grabs you right away and holds your interest to the end.
Kathryn Bigelow should be a heavy favorite to win another Oscar this year, but she is not the only favorite to emerge from this movie, Jessica Chastain delivers an outstanding performance as the workaholic agent, Maya. She commands the screen every second she is on it and may even move you to tears, she is that great. The acting by the entire cast is fantastic.
“Zero Dark Thirty” is long and it can be described as sometimes slow, but it is methodical. The movie does take place over the course of ten years. You may know how the movie ends, but the very talented director still manages to keep you at the edge of your seats at times to the point where you feel you are right there with the characters. Once you see this movie it is easy to understand how it was the #1 movie for many critics out there. It is rated R for strong violence including brutal disturbing images and for language.