Review – Zero Dark Thirty


28 January 2013, Singapore – Probably one of the most interesting films that we have seen so far; Zero Dark Thirty is the behind-the-scenes story of the decade long manhunt for Osama Bin Laden.

In the trailer of his 2008 documentary, Where In The World Is Osama Bin Laden, eccentric director Morgan Spurlock tells us that if he’s learnt anything from big budget action movies, it’s that complicated global problems are solved by one lonely guy. One lonely girl in this case, but prophetic enough.

Our hero is Maya, played by Jessica Chastain who recently won the Golden Globe for Best Actress in Zero Dark Thirty, and is set to take on JLaw for the same prize in this weekend’s SAG awards and the Oscars in a few weeks.

Maya is a badass. All pale and skinny, wearing a suit to a torture interrogation chamber, we learn that her bosses think she’s a shark. And she proves it, sniffing out the clues that everyone missed because only she was able to read between the lines; see what the enemy doesn’t want you to see. In the end, she even earns the respect of the Seal team six crew moving in for the final assault, who are pretty badass by definition.

Possibly a reflection of the long period of intelligence gathering that preluded the final days of the manhunt, the first couple of acts drags on for quite a bit. But coming out of the theatre, we felt like we were there, like we were part of the action and the years and years of dead-ends, and finally when it’s over, we feel done. Like Maya, is done. Now what?

Doris Tian

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