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Zero Dark Thirty

Directed by Kathryn Bigelow

UK, 2012

Cornerhouse, 27 January 2013

Zero Dark Thirty

The war on terror told from the perspective of Jessica Chastain’s CIA agent.

When a key colleague is killed, it becomes very personal for Maya: she wants ObL’s head on a silver platter.  It is this move of Kathryn Bigelow’s, her decision to treat the hunt for ObL as a matter of payback and personal revenge, that reduces the film somewhat.  It makes for an utterly compelling thriller, but perhaps not more than that.

The grown-up view would be: in a war all sides suffer, and suffer casualties.  No one is exempt.

This is a fine film overall, mind, and is framed by two technological feats of – whatever else they were – great daring.  The way in which  it covers the second of these, the raid on ObL’s compound in Pakistan, will leave you holding your breath.