Film review: Argo

posted at 2:01 pm on February 24, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

In 1979, the revolutionary Iranian government allowed a mob to seize the American embassy in Tehran, and then kept the staff hostage for 444 days.  Six Americans managed to escape the sacking of the embassy and ended up in the residence of the Canadian ambassador.  How did they get out?  If they made a movie about it, you might not believe that it actually happened, especially if the movie claimed that Hollywood came to the rescue.

But actually, Argo doesn’t really make that argument. CIA operative Tony Mendez (Ben Affleck, who also directed) specializes in exfiltration, and faces perhaps his most daunting mission ever — getting the six Americans hidden by Canada out of Iran, when every Iranian revolutionary wants to find an American spy.  He suggests a cover story that even he and his friend assess as the least bad option: create a film production company, publicize the phony film so that the trade journals pick it up, and then issue fake Canadian passports to the Americans and fly them out of Iran as the film crew.  When Mendez enlists the real-life Oscar-winning makeup artist John Chambers (John Goodman) and Hollywood mover and shaker Lester Siegel (Alan Arkin), that just provides the cover story. The real action takes place when Mendez, using the cover name Kevin Harkins, flies to Tehran to get the Americans out.

I was a little surprised when readers picked this film for me yesterday to review, but very pleased.  I hadn’t yet taken the opportunity to watch it, and it is one I wanted to see.  I remember the hostage crisis very, very well, as did most of the people who lived through that shameful episode, and I remember the joy of the escape of these six Americans very clearly.  Affleck puts us back into that time frame seamlessly, and the connection is almost uncomfortably visceral.  In fact, I’d bet that anyone my age or older would have a significantly different experience watching this film than younger viewers will have.  The pacing and timing is taut, and Affleck delivers on the suspense of the situation, allowing us to feel a share of the joy and relief of the Americans as they clear Iranian airspace.

Those expecting a political lecture will be either disappointed or relieved.  The politics of the situation is almost entirely ignored, except in reference to Iranian politics and the US/UK-sponsored coup d’etat of the Mossadegh government in the early 1950s.  Those expecting this to be a Hollywood-saves-the-day film will likewise be disappointed/relieved.  While their involvement was real — Chambers won a civilian intelligence award for his part — they are a relatively minor part of the story, and mostly provide some comedy relief.  (The real-life Chambers chose Argo as the film title because of a love of knock-knock jokes, the punchline of which becomes a running R-rated joke.) This is a CIA film from beginning to end, one of the few success stories that we know from that period, even if we only found out about it years later.

What isn’t a joke is the unrelenting malevolence and danger of the Iranian revolutionaries. The film creates an oppressive environment not just for the 56 hostages seized by the mullahcracy, but also for the six who managed to escape.  It’s a gripping tale well told, and it’s almost too good; the danger feels so realistic, one hesitates to re-enter the environment.  However, a first viewing is almost a requirement for those who lived through the period, and perhaps more so for those who didn’t.  It might explain a few things about the current standoff between the US and Iran, and why we aren’t inclined to take their threats about a world without the US and Israel lightly.

It should be noted that the film tends to shortchange the Canadians, and the British and New Zealanders to a lesser extent.  Don’t take my word for it — Jimmy Carter makes it clear that the film tends to credit the CIA at the expense of the Canadians:

“The only thing that I would say was that 90 percent of the contributions to the ideas and the consummation of the plan was Canadian,” he told Morgan. “And the movie gives almost full credit to the American CIA. And with that exception, the movie’s very good.”

CIA operative Tony Mendez, who was played very well Affleck, was only in Tehran for “a day and a half.”

The main hero, in my opinion, was Ken Taylor who was the Canadian ambassador who orchestrated the entire process,” said the 39th president. “I was informed about it the first day, and I was very much involved with the Canadian government because the Canadian government would not legally permit six false passports to be issued. So the Canadian parliament had to go into secret session the first time in history, and they voted to let us use six Canadian passports that were false.”

Carter also said that although there was some political risk for him and the U.S. to use a ruse of a film crew going into Iran to rescue these Americans, the real credit goes to Canada.

“It was much bolder for the Canadian government to do because the Canadian government was not involved in the hostage crisis.”

Just to make sure the record is clear, the film shows Mendez in Teheran for what appears to be parts of two days, but they do make up the bulk of the second half of the film.  Regardless of what Mendez did, Carter’s right: Ken Taylor was a hero who saved the lives of those six Americans, and fortunately the film paints him very much that way.

Tonight, Argo goes up against Lincoln and eight other films for the Academy Award.  If I were voting, I’d go with Lincoln, but that doesn’t mean Argo isn’t a terrific film.  Again, I’d recommend it very highly.

Argo is rated R for language and violent images.  It’s not for children or young teens, but older teens should be able to handle it.


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It should be noted that the film tends to shortchange the Canadians,
====================================================================

So,I’ve been hearing,and my Canadian Beavers refuse to gnaw down
any more trees,till Ben Affleck apologizes!
(snark)

canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 2:13 PM

Thanks, Ed. Now I will be sure to see it and watch with a clearer idea of Canada’s help and Mr. Taylor’s heroics. I’ll even chalk one up for Jimmah for the clarification and inside info. Up until now the only thing nice I had to say about Pres. Carter is that he gave us Pres. Reagan.

Cindy Munford on February 24, 2013 at 2:14 PM

It should be noted that the film tends to shortchange the Canadians,
====================================================================

So,I’ve been hearing,and my Canadian Beavers refuse to gnaw down
any more trees,till Ben Affleck apologizes!
(snark)

canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 2:13 PM

(:->)

KOOLAID2 on February 24, 2013 at 2:19 PM

Rather liked it, but best movie of the year…….

rob verdi on February 24, 2013 at 2:21 PM

Carter is the LAST PERSON who should be allowed to discuss what happened in Iran!

pilamaye on February 24, 2013 at 2:23 PM

Thank you for providing some needed balance. The malevolence of the, and the government which supported them (in fact decorated them) should not be forgotten.

Blaise on February 24, 2013 at 2:27 PM

Affleck puts us back into that time frame seamlessly, and the connection is almost uncomfortably visceral.

Ben Affleck is still a major liberal Marxist wannabe a$$hole.

SWalker on February 24, 2013 at 2:28 PM

With this pic of Ben Affleck, it’s three pics of dudes pointing at something in a row.

thebrokenrattle on February 24, 2013 at 2:31 PM

By coincidence, I just happened to watch Argo myself last night, on Movies On Demand. I also am old enough to remember the hostage crisis (and the oil embargo, and all the other Middle Eastern shenanigans designed to sting America), and the movie reminded me that my anger at the Iranians remains unabated. It was very well done, and I was biting my nails toward the end, even though I knew how it was going to turn out.

I could have done without Carter’s exposition at the end. He was partly to blame for letting events build into a crisis, and he had absolutely no clue how to handle any of it.

RebeccaH on February 24, 2013 at 2:34 PM

Looking forward to watching it

Thanks Ed

cmsinaz on February 24, 2013 at 2:35 PM

So,I’ve been hearing,and my Canadian Beavers refuse to gnaw down
any more trees,till Ben Affleck apologizes!
(snark)

canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 2:13 PM

Y’all Canooks should do it without the snark.

I remember the help y’all gave us.

This story, what Bull Simons did (about the only reason I didn’t join in in the Perot bashing), and Nightline (for a while) were some decent things that came out of that mess.

cozmo on February 24, 2013 at 2:40 PM

canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 2:13 PM

(:->)

KOOLAID2 on February 24, 2013 at 2:19 PM

KOOLAID2:I couldn`t resist!:-O

canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 2:43 PM

canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 2:13 PM

Y’all Canooks should do it without the snark.

I remember the help y’all gave us.

This story, what Bull Simons did (about the only reason I didn’t join in in the Perot bashing), and Nightline (for a while) were some decent things that came out of that mess.

cozmo on February 24, 2013 at 2:40 PM

cozmo:The (snark),was for my imaginary beavers!:)

canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 2:45 PM

… my Canadian Beavers refuse to gnaw down any more trees … canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 2:13 PM

If that’s a new euphemism, you have my sincere sympathies.

gh on February 24, 2013 at 2:47 PM

It should be noted that the film tends to shortchange the Canadians,

Heh! You have to sacrifice truth to make box office bottom lines. Only American heroes will bring in the bucks.

BL@KBIRD on February 24, 2013 at 2:51 PM

cozmo:The (snark),was for my imaginary beavers!:)

canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 2:45 PM

Yeah, well Aflack is scum not even worthy of mouth sucking the puss from pimples on those beavers butt’s for playing down the help our allies provided. He is the puss in those pimples.

cozmo on February 24, 2013 at 2:54 PM

Jimmy Carter makes it clear that the film tends to credit the CIA at the expense of the Canadians:

I think he’s far more happy that the film doesn’t bring up Operation Eagle Claw.

KingGold on February 24, 2013 at 2:54 PM

Operation Eagle Claw

Operation Eagle Claw (or Operation Evening Light or Operation Rice Bowl)[2] was an American military operation ordered by U.S.

President Jimmy Carter to attempt to end the Iran hostage crisis by rescuing 52 Americans held captive at the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, Iran on April 24, 1980. Its failure, and the humiliating public debacle that ensued, damaged American prestige worldwide and is believed by many, including Carter himself, to have played a major role in his defeat in the 1980 U.S. presidential election.[3]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Eagle_Claw
==================================================

OPERATION EAGLE CLAW
Posted 10/16/2012
*****************

Air Force Historical Studies Office

http://www.afhso.af.mil/topics/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=19809

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Eagle_Claw

canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 2:56 PM

Le Ugh,wrong ,US Air Force Historical Linky,disregard!

(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Eagle_Claw)

canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 2:59 PM

Argo is rated R for language and violent images. It’s not for children or young teens, but older teens should be able to handle it.

This is one of two R-rated movies that I’ve taken my 11 year-old to see. The other was The King’s Speech.

The violence is muted. At most there is one death shown, and a mock execution. There is quite a bit of profanity.

aunursa on February 24, 2013 at 3:04 PM

thanks ed. will consider it.

ted c on February 24, 2013 at 3:05 PM

I think he’s far more happy that the film doesn’t bring up Operation Eagle Claw.

KingGold on February 24, 2013 at 2:54 PM

KingGold:

Yup,another Liberal President FUBAR,much like Benghazi,accept
the (MC-130-EC-130),er,…..AC-130 never made it on station,er,the AC-130 wasn`t even thought about,to be tasked to said,….station!:)

canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 3:06 PM

You are WAY more generous than I am to this movie, Ed. It was only okay – not worthy anywhere close to the praise it is getting.

Affleck is an awful actor, and a decent director. His choice to cast himself as the main character was a HUGE misstep.

Don’t get me wrong, I was entertained by it, but to say that it is the best movie of the year makes the year seem pretty weak.

mjk on February 24, 2013 at 3:06 PM

Although I remember the Iranian hostage situation, I dont’ recall these 6 escapees nor the circumstances surrounding their escape.

ted c on February 24, 2013 at 3:06 PM

Agro F**k yourself is the best line in the movie.

nazo311 on February 24, 2013 at 3:08 PM

OPERATION EAGLE CLAW
For more information see:
*************************

“Air Force Combat Controllers at Desert One”, by Forrest Marion, from Air Power History, Spring 2009.

(9 Pages)

http://www.afhso.af.mil/shared/media/document/AFD-120803-027.pdf

canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 3:09 PM

When was the last time 2 best pic noms (0Dark30 & Argo) in the same year had (deliberately or not) such a starkly pro-American, pro-freedom, anti-tyrant point of view?

And in both flicks the tyrants are Islamo nutters! Quel Horreur!

Hollywood Progs must be screaming and crying into their organic Kale and Radicchio salads today

Sacramento on February 24, 2013 at 3:10 PM

Here is what John Nolte at Breitbart wrote on Friday, summarizing (in milder terms) what I’ve felt for years.

“…somewhere along the line I stopped caring because watching new releases went from pleasure to pain. Over time, it started to feel like a duty, a chore, something that had to be checked off a to-do list.

Today, I hardly see anything. Other than Denzel Washington, there are no movie stars and the films themselves are too long, dumb, political, dirty instead of naughty, and filled with bland actors, bad CGI, and soul-killing themes.”

And he’s a movie writer.

rrpjr on February 24, 2013 at 3:13 PM

Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm…………….

Former Canadian ambassador to Iran criticizes ‘Argo’ for neglecting Canada’s role – @nytimes

Feb 22, 2013, 10:30 p.m. from carpetbagger.blogs.nytimes.com
================================================================

Former Canadian Ambassador Renews Criticism of ‘Argo’

In the film, Mr. Affleck takes several liberties with history, big and small. In an interview from New York, where he has lived for years, Mr. Taylor said one of his main concerns is that the movie gives the false impression that that extrication of the Americans was an operation run entirely by the C.I.A. in which he and other Canadian diplomats simply followed orders.“I don’t want to be hard on Tony Mendez,” Mr. Taylor said. “I want to give him all the credit I can. But at the same time I’m a Canadian and enough is enough.”

As well, Mr. Taylor said he was disturbed by the film’s suggestion that the C.I.A., for secrecy reasons, allowed him and Canada initially to take all of the credit for the successful flight of the six Americans.

Following the publicity surrounding the Toronto premiere, Mr. Affleck flew Mr. Taylor and his wife to the special screening in Los Angeles and interviewed Mr. Taylor for material that was included with the DVD. To mitigate Mr. Taylor’s concern that viewers might think that he unfairly took credit for actions that were the C.I.A.’s, Mr. Affleck agreed to insert a postscript written by Mr. Taylor which emphasizes how the rescue was a partnership of the two nations.

Mr. Affleck also prominently featured Mr. Taylor at the film’s Washington premiere and placed a courtesy call to John Sheardown, a Canadian diplomat who sheltered four of the six Americans in his home but who is not mentioned in the film. Mr. Sheardown died recently.

In promotional material included with the DVD, Mr. Affleck and others describe how the film took great lengths with visual historical details. For example, a scene filmed in the lobby of the C.I.A.’s headquarters was digitally altered to only include the number of stars representing officers who had been killed on missions that existed at the time of the Iran crisis.

Robert Wright, the author of “Our Man In Tehran,” a book about the rescue first published in 2010 said the filmmakers’ attention to that sort of detail was a contrast to their use of historical facts.

But unlike some Canadians, Mr. Wright said that the film’s liberties with the historical record, no matter how big, can be excused.

“This story is at risk of being lost and that’s why ‘Argo’ is important,” he said. “Quibbling over its historical inaccuracies does, to some extent, do a great disservice to Hollywood movies.”
(more…..)
===========

http://carpetbagger.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/02/22/former-canadian-ambassador-renews-criticism-of-argo/

canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 3:15 PM

The film does shortchange the Canadians and much of it is fiction, but if you accept it as largely a work of fiction based on the hostage crisis, it succeeds quite well. It does portray the Iranians as the debased villains they were (are). Some day I’d like to see a movie based on the actual events. Ben Affleck is evolving into quite a good filmmaker, I think.

I’ve seen exactly two movies in the last eight months and Ed reviews them both today!

SukieTawdry on February 24, 2013 at 3:15 PM

… my Canadian Beavers refuse to gnaw down
any more trees,till Ben Affleck apologizes!
(snark)

canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 2:13 PM

There’s an off-color joke in there somewhere. :-)

Solaratov on February 24, 2013 at 3:18 PM

We watched Argo last night as well. Funny how it was only briefly mentioned that the 53 hostages were released after 444 days of captivity on January 20, 1981. Did anything else happen on that day? I forget…

monalisa on February 24, 2013 at 3:19 PM

canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 2:45 PM

Yeah, well Aflack is scum not even worthy of mouth sucking the puss from pimples on those beavers butt’s for playing down the help our allies provided. He is the puss in those pimples.

cozmo on February 24, 2013 at 2:54 PM

cozmo:Ahem,Lol:)

canopfor on February 24, 2013 at 3:21 PM

Hollywood Progs must be screaming and crying into their organic Kale and Radicchio salads today

Sacramento on February 24, 2013 at 3:10 PM

Can’t you appreciate something without politicizing it? Actually both files were financed and made by progressives. Haters like you on the right apparently aren’t very good at projecting American soft power abroad.

bayam on February 24, 2013 at 3:33 PM

Funny how it was only briefly mentioned that the 53 hostages were released after 444 days of captivity on January 20, 1981. Did anything else happen on that day? I forget…

monalisa on February 24, 2013 at 3:19 PM

…in another decade Carter will be the hero…and you’ll see it in the history books like all the other revisionist/omitting history… you have seen in the last couple of decades

KOOLAID2 on February 24, 2013 at 3:39 PM

Haters like you on the right apparently aren’t very good at projecting American soft power abroad.

bayam on February 24, 2013 at 3:33 PM

…Haters like you on the left apparently are very good at braying your soft brain power here and abroad

KOOLAID2 on February 24, 2013 at 3:46 PM

If you want to balance out Argo’s CIA myopia (haven’t seen the film, but I’ve heard it’s good), I recommend you hunt down Escape from Iran: The Canadian Caper. Do a Google for the imdb listing.

The movie has Gordon Pinsent as Ken Taylor and Chris Wiggins as the his deputy John Sheardown, who also hosted American refugees. They had to dance around the CIA involvement in this film because in 1981, when the film was made, much of that was still secret.

As a Trawnna native (that’s Toronto for the benefit of the uninitiated), I loved the training scenes for the Americans prior to going to the airport to escape from Iran. They had to be convincingly Canadian. One delicious bit involves the pronunciation of Etobicoke, a ‘burb of Toronto. The American was unaware that the “k” is silent. Ha!

MichiCanuck on February 24, 2013 at 3:58 PM

We watched Argo last night as well. Funny how it was only briefly mentioned that the 53 hostages were released after 444 days of captivity on January 20, 1981. Did anything else happen on that day? I forget…

monalisa on February 24, 2013 at 3:19 PM

Well, in their defense, it would feel to them like their skin was burning off their bodies if they actually had to admit that one event had anything to do with the other.

inviolet on February 24, 2013 at 4:03 PM

Can’t you appreciate something without politicizing it?
bayam on February 24, 2013 at 3:33 PM

Nope. Everything is political now. And it’s all war. Those are your rules. Stop whining.

rrpjr on February 24, 2013 at 4:06 PM

oh remember the days when attacks on embassies were considered an act of war. If only carter had the balls to enforce that long held national ideal and bombed Iran back to the stone age. I think all the embassy bombings that came after would not have occurred.

unseen on February 24, 2013 at 4:12 PM

I remember the hostage crisis very, very well, as did most of the people who lived through that shameful episode, and I remember the joy of the escape of these six Americans very clearly.

Sunday, Feb 24, 1980 was the day the US Olympic hockey team beat Finland to win the Gold Medal.

They had beaten the Rooskies in the Miracle on Ice game two days earlier.

One of the very few things to cheer about back then.

Bruno Strozek on February 24, 2013 at 4:26 PM

For those not interested in blowing Affleck and Jimmy, here’s IBD’s take on the film. “Sub-Plot of Revisionist ‘Argo’: Rescuing Jimmy Carter”.

andycanuck on February 24, 2013 at 4:33 PM

andycanuck on February 24, 2013 at 4:33 PM

Exactly.

rrpjr on February 24, 2013 at 5:09 PM

Hollywood Progs must be screaming and crying into their organic Kale and Radicchio salads today

Sacramento on February 24, 2013 at 3:10 PM

Can’t you appreciate something without politicizing it? Actually both files were financed and made by progressives. Haters like you on the right apparently aren’t very good at projecting American soft power abroad.

bayam on February 24, 2013 at 3:33 PM

Sigh.

you cant swing a dead cat in Hollywood today without hitting a proud activist lib with tickets to the awards show bitterly lamenting why the industry is even thinking about honoring these movies instead of “approved-by-progessives” box office poison such as Lions for Lambs, Valley of Elah, Syriana, Rendition, Stop Loss Death of a President. etc in prior years.

Sacramento on February 24, 2013 at 5:15 PM

bayam on February 24, 2013 at 3:33 PM

Might want to wipe that spittle off your chin, I think you got some on your “Obama’s my homeboy” shirt.

dominigan on February 24, 2013 at 6:29 PM

One of the best movies I’ve ever seen.

JellyToast on February 24, 2013 at 6:50 PM

I hated the ending of the movie with Carter speaking about how well the crisis ended without bloodshed like he was successful. It ended because the Iranians were afraid of Reagan.

HellCat on February 24, 2013 at 7:00 PM

From a collegue

TSRA stands dor ‘Technical Service Retirees Association’ The spy techs for which Tony Mendez was one.

——————————

To all TSRA members:

John T forwarded a note from Jerry S regarding his review of the Argo book and movie.

Thought you all might want to see what Jerry thinks.

Thanks to John for sending us the review.

Mike G
______________________________

I have now read the book and seen the movie–ARGO. I also decided to review the book and have now done so, and you can see that by going to Amazon website, Books, under readers reviews. I decided to do that for several reasons, not the least of which is that it fairly accurately portrays a very successful spy operation from Office of Technical Service in a positive way.
And of course it is rather exciting/intriguing almost in the sense of a good fiction story–but it is true. And lastly it reflects favorably on the agency–and of course Canada as well. Some good history there in the book too, see the review and I trust that will sell some more books for Tony.
Tomorrow we may even see an Oscar from all that–to bad John chambers is gone.

Jerry S

This is the review.

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Insider comments on ARGO, February 23, 2013
By Jerry S. – See all my reviewsAmazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
This review is from: Argo: How the CIA and Hollywood Pulled Off the Most Audacious Rescue in History (Paperback)
I was directly in the management chain as ARGO was planned and executed ’79-’80. The credit for its’ inception and completion is properly attributed in Argo to the principals involved, Tony et al. My role, alone with other OTS managers in Mendez’ office, was to support it administratively and “stand clear”. I recently saw the movie and found it basically accurate except for a few hollywood enhancements like the shootout at the airport. I just finished reading the book and, even though I was bureaucratically Tony’supervisor, I learned much new detail of the operation from the book. I, and others of OTS retirees, sometimes think Tony has an advanced case of “egomania” that has appeared in his writings, now three books amplified by the movie– “it is hard to be humble when you are so damned good”; It is also true that most of us have experienced at least a few high profile unheralded successes in our agency careers that we also treasure and can only bragg about in a limited restricted context, if at all. And so, we may simply suffer from some degree of envy for Tony’s spotlight–though most of us probably don’t want it. The details of the book enhanced my recollections of the operation, now over thirty years old, and added considerable new detail despite my having been there. In a sense Tony was pushed into sharing his ARGO and other exfil adventures by senior management and so he is not a “blabbermouth” in that regard. Most of us “oldies” remain paranoid about revealing too much operational detail on many subjects. I am pleased that Tony has represented our Agency in a positive way; ARGO shows the complexity and intracacies of clandestine spy operations and, in this instance, especially that of the disguise, documentation and exfiltration operations, supported by a large cadre of skilled behind the scenes experts: thanks guys/gals, you were there. SEE THE MOVIE, READ THE BOOK, since it also has some good historical documentation–oops, there’s that term again! ARGO should be required reading for all rookie CIA operatives. Thanks Tony, good show. Keep painting,as I am sure you are. Help other customers find the most helpful reviews
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Comment Comment

mouell on February 24, 2013 at 7:21 PM

I will see the flick.

However I would direct all of you Mendez’s book.
He goes into some detail about this as well as a few other operations he did for the Company.

Beats any flick.

By the way: No matter how much lipstick they slap on the pig that was the Carter Administration, it still was better than the Affirmative Action Obozomarist one we got now, if only in that it was 4 years long.

Bubba Redneck on February 24, 2013 at 7:26 PM

I just saw the film. It was good film until I found out it was wrong.

It’s a liberal tribute to Jimmy Carter.

Oil Can on February 24, 2013 at 7:36 PM

I also saw the movie last night. They did briefly mention Operation Eagle Claw in a very general way. The rescue was being called off at the last minute because of something big about to happen, ie. Eagle Claw.

Good movie, tense, but not best picture material.

BubbaCluck on February 24, 2013 at 7:45 PM

I’ve always been proud of the role my (Canadian) government played in the rescue of the American hostages. I wasn’t as aware of the CIA story, so this made “Argo” more than just a re-tread for me. Yah, they could have played up the Canuck part more prominently, but I was fascinated by the story I didn’t know.
Affleck made a great movie btw.

Randy

williars on February 24, 2013 at 9:49 PM

I just watched this film (from my hole in Afghanistan) and realized that Carter would move heaven and earth to save 6 low-level Americans. Obama wouldn’t send a gunship to save an Ambassador.

I never thought I would miss Carter.

oprockwell on February 24, 2013 at 11:27 PM

And a surprise win apparently for Best Oscar. Well deserved imho. I thought it was one of the most riveting movies I’ve seen in a long time.

SoRight on February 25, 2013 at 12:22 AM

cozmo on February 24, 2013 at 2:54 PM

OK, that was unneccesary. And, very … eeewwwwwwwwww.

This story is one told in the Spy Museum in DC. Which is a pretty good museum, though it costs to get in. I seem to recall they gave the Canadians their due at the museum.

GWB on February 25, 2013 at 9:08 AM

The two actors from Argo who haven’t gotten enough props are Alan Arkin and John Goodman. Granted, they had all the best lines but I still thought they stold the show.

tommyboy on February 25, 2013 at 10:14 AM

The real achievement of Argo is that Hollywood managed to make a movie that portrays the CIA in a favorable light and award it the industry’s highest honor.

As far as “short changing” the Canadians, I’ll just say it wasn’t Canadians who (a) came up with the exfiltration plan, (b) put it into practice, and (c) escorted the disguised Americans past the Kometeh and the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and onto the plane. Their contribution is to be commended, but the CIA did all the heavy lifting.

allanbourdius on February 25, 2013 at 10:14 AM

Agro F**k yourself is the best line in the movie.

nazo311 on February 24, 2013 at 3:08 PM

Unfortunately true.

Can’t really comment on the historical accuracy, but there appeared to be no direction of the actors: for example, in the scene where the apparently terrified group is being held up by gun-toting Iranians, they are all sitting there as if waiting for the #9 bus. Obviously catering was running late and they were pre-occupied.

The most impressive thing about Argo, is Ben Affleck’s hair which is by itself Oscar-worthy.

virgo on February 25, 2013 at 11:42 AM

How exactly did the comment thread from “Argo” end up replacing teh comments from “Iron Man 3″?

Count to 10 on May 6, 2013 at 6:01 PM