So what did you think of the movie in general?
I think it was fascinating to see the actual techniques used to break the captives surrounding Osama bin Laden’s group al Queda. The movie avoids the political events since 2011 for the most part, which was likely necessary due to compressing 10 years to 2 hours. I would have liked to have seen more of the back stage decisions influencing the team like the move from Bush to Obama. There was a strip down of the Bush impact on the hunt of Osama in the movie, which I think would have framed the movie more concretely.
Is this just a snuff film? Is it relevant as a “normal” movie?
Yes, this definitely has the quality of a snuff movie of an actual real-life person boiled down to his decisions as a terrorist. Same thing could be said about the Passion done by Gibson as well, which was used to convert guilty Rome to Christianity. Out of the historical context, the movie will be highly watched long-term as it captures good drama and story-telling, but you know the ending…. spoiler alert.
Is there any positive take-aways from the movie seen as it is the hunt for a terrorist and the use of torture by the pursuers?
Yes, the movie does a great job of establishing the fact that the CIA used/uses torture to get information during the hunt of Osama, so you get the feel there is no redemption for any of the characters.
You do get the feel of the persistence of both sides of the battle. On one side, you can see how deviously Osama was able to maintain contact with his group, stay funded and help plan future events while putting up a great smoke screen to prevent his discovery for a very long time. On the US side, you see the persistence of the team members to continue the investigation in the face of poisoning their own character via torture, death of friends and personal threat of danger. These people made a conscious decision to live as a soldier or CIA member, which characterizes them for life.
Do you believe this is the ending of the terrorism saga from 2011?
Sadly, no. As we killed Osama, there may arise another group in the next 10 years that strives for vengeance. If you realize that Clinton accidently shot down an Iranian civilian airline in the 1988 and then al Queda appears all of a sudden, you can see the government connection there. I mean hiding out for years requires careful planning and continual financial funding. So some government is behind his group more than likely. Iran makes sense, as we overthrew the Shaw in 1953, they took US hostages in 1979, Iranian airline shot down in 1988, US funding Saddam to gas Iranians in the Iran-Iraq war, 9/11 and now the death of Osama. It seems to fit well in the cycle of long-term hatred and misunderstanding between these cultures. Many of the weapons in Syria are funded by Iran and we are now attacking their nuclear facilities virtually and economically, so the cycle continues. The cycle will likely continue until one side declares and wins an all-out war similar to what happened to Germany and Japan in WWII.
The movie is directed by a woman. Did you see an impact of that feminine voice?
Definitely, in the lead character being a woman investigator. It was shocking to find out that many of the lead CIA investigators were in fact women. What I thought was great regardless of the gender impact, was the character development. You feel, drink and eat these characters. It was not a white wash simplification, but at the same time not too much dialogue to bog down the film flow. I definitely am a new fan of Kathryn Bigelow. I was also amazed that originally she was a painter. Some of the scenes definitely have that quality of careful study and playing with the scene until it came off right– only painting can teach you that dedication to the process. Also the film flow has that lost feel as the detectives floundered looking for the leads of Osama, which has the same feel you do as you paint and wander across the canvas until the final image just pops into your mind.