Argo is the space adventure story that may or may not be filmed in Iran. Well, that’s the movie within the movie. Argo is the name of both movies. This latest movie by actor/director Ben Affleck is a one of the best of the year.
But first …
Yes, I am reviewing a movie on my blog.
My blog has no rules. One day, I am talking about using negative keywords when constructing ad groups, another day discussing the value of the Kind Campaign, and today: MOVIES.
Now back to Argo.
Argo is based on real events at the height of the Iranian revolution in 1979. It starts with Iranian militants storming the US Embassy in Tehran. Through this process they take 52 American hostages. This is not their story.
Argo is actually based on the six Americans who manage to escape the embassy. Ultimately they sought refuge from the Canadian Ambassador. Thank you, Canada.
CIA agent Tony Mendez, played by Ben Affleck, derives a plan to rescue the six. The plan is to convince the Iranians that these six Americans are actually Canadian film makers that are in the country scouting locations for ‘Argo’ (The movie within-in the movie). Is this a good idea? No, it’s a bad idea, but it’s the “best bad idea” they have. It certainly beats the other option of rescuing the crew on bicycles.
Not only does Argo tackle a serious and true topic, but the comedy in it is also great. Yes, I know, who would think a film about the Iranian hostage standoff would be funny, but yet it was. The humor was handled in a proper way. Most of the comedy comes from the Hollywood side of Argo. This is where Mendez enlists a Hollywood makeup artist (John Goodman) and a producer (Alan Arkin) to make the plan credible.
“If I’m gonna make a fake movie, I’m gonna make a fake hit!” – Arkin’s character sums up the work needed to pull off this real, fake movie.
The contrast between the fake world of Hollywood and Iranians putting on a “show” for the camera are well-done. One my favorite scenes involved a table read of the ‘Argo’ script, which included full-makeup characters and costumed actors. This was balanced back and forth with a scene of abused hostages and forced manifesto readings. Both were quite the spectacle.
I’ll leave the rest to you. No spoilers. The movie really never misses a beat. From the terrifying opening sequence, to the post-movie credits (stay for extra footage); the movie is great all the way through.
The movie is unbelievable … well, it would be if it were not so true.
(4 out 5)
Tags: argo, entertainment, Movies, review
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