Directed by Ben Affleck, Argo is a dramatization of the 1980 joint CIA-Canadian secret operation to extract six fugitive American diplomatic personnel out of revolutionary Iran, which is in turn based on the book The Master of Disguise. Led by CIA exfiltration specialist Tony Mendez (Ben Affleck), author of the novel itself, a team is set up with the help of Tony’s supervisor Jack O’Donnell (Bryan Cranston), Hollywood make-up artist John Chambers (John Goodman), and film producer Lester Siegel (Alan Arkin), to create a cover story for the escapees, in which the fugitives must pose as Canadian filmmakers who are scouting exotic locations in Iran for a science-fiction film.
First and foremost, Argo is an incredible directorial piece of work by Affleck, and it’s no surprise that he won so many awards for his accomplished efforts at this year’s award ceremonies. Affleck handles this true story amazingly and creates quite the periodic thriller with everything from the music to the clothing coming together superbly. These aesthetics are constantly strong, and really compliment the story as it looks as realistic as it actually is.
Based on truth, the story is never taken too far to make you believe otherwise, which is why it works so well. The tone of the film keeps you constantly engrossed, and even though you know how it’s going to end you’re still made to question what will happen next. The final few scenes are still tense and the film works as a well-paced thriller on its own. Whilst I found that the first half dragged a little bit, the second half is absolutely brilliant and more than makes up for it.
The performances are also great, and the cast is very strong with interesting roles, especially, from the likes of Bryan Cranston, Alan Arkin and John Goodman.
On a whole, Argo is a great piece of film-making, released on DVD on 4th March.
Argo fuck yourself.