Zero Dark Thirty (2012)

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    • Zero Dark Thirty (2012)

      ZERO DARK THIRTY

      DIRECTED BY KATHRYN BIGELOW
      PRODUCED BY KATHRYN BIGELOW/ MARK BOAL
      ANNAPURNA PICTURES
      COLUMBIA PICTURES/ UNIVERSAL PICTURES




      Information from IMDb

      Plot Summary
      Maya is a CIA operative whose first experience is in the interrogation of prisoners
      following the Al Qaeda attacks against the U.S. on the 11th September 2001.
      She is a reluctant participant in extreme duress applied to the detainees,
      but believes that the truth may only be obtained through such tactics.
      For several years, she is single-minded in her pursuit of leads to uncover
      the whereabouts of Al Qaeda's leader, Osama Bin Laden. Finally, in 2011,
      it appears that her work will pay off, and a U.S. Navy SEAL team
      is sent to kill or capture Bin Laden. But only Maya is confident Bin Laden is where she says he is.
      Written by Jim Beaver

      Full Cast
      Jason Clarke ... Dan
      Reda Kateb ... Ammar
      Jessica Chastain ... Maya
      Kyle Chandler ... Joseph Bradley
      Jennifer Ehle ... Jessica
      Harold Perrineau ... Jack
      Jeremy Strong ... Thomas
      J.J. Kandel ... J.J.
      Wahab Sheikh ... Detainee on Monitor
      Alexander Karim ... Detainee on Monitor
      Nabil Elouahabi ... Detainee on Monitor
      Aymen Hamdouchi ... Detainee on Monitor
      Simon Abkarian ... Detainee on Monitor
      Ali Marhyar ... Interrogator on Monitor
      Parker Sawyers ... Interrogator on Monitor
      Akin Gazi ... Interrogator on Monitor
      Derek Siow ... Interrogator on Monitor
      Fares Fares ... Hakim
      Mohammad K. ... Cargo Ship Detainee
      Henry Garrett ... Bagram Guard
      Homayoun Ershadi ... Hassan Ghul
      Darshan Aulakh ... Pakistani Detention Center Guard
      Navdeep Singh ... Faraj Courier
      Yoav Levi ... Abu Faraj al-Libbi
      Sukhdeep Singh ... Pakistani Guard at Marriott
      Musa Sattari ... Human Khalil al-Balawi
      David Menkin ... Case Officer
      Scott Adkins ... John
      Eyad Zoubi ... Zied
      Julian Lewis Jones ... Blackwater Guard
      Christian Contreras ... C.I.A. Security
      Lauren Shaw ... Lauren
      Zachary Becker ... Embassy Tech
      Mark Strong ... George
      John Antonini ... Analyst at Embassy
      Jessica Collins ... Debbie
      Fredric Lehne ... The Wolf
      Ashraf Telfah ... Kuwaiti Businessman
      Édgar Ramírez ... Larry from Ground Branch
      Jonathan Olley ... Tech from Ground Branch
      Ben Lambert ... N.S.A. Tech
      Manraaj Singh ... Rawal Caller
      Tushaar Mehra ... Abu Ahmed
      Daniel Lapaine ... Tim - Station Chief
      Udayan Baijal ... Guard at Maya's Apartment
      Mark Duplass ... Steve
      James Gandolfini ... C.I.A. Director
      Stephen Dillane ... National Security Advisor
      John Schwab ... Deputy National Security Advisor
      Martin Delaney ... Assistant to National Security Advisor
      Nabil Koni ... Pakistani Doctor
      Anthony Edridge ... General in Hangar
      John Barrowman ... Jeremy
      Jeff Mash ... Deputy Director of C.I.A.
      Joel Edgerton ... Patrick - Squadron Team Leader
      Chris Pratt ... Justin - DEVGRU
      Taylor Kinney ... Jared - DEVGRU
      Callan Mulvey ... Saber - DEVGRU
      Siaosi Fonua ... Henry - DEVGRU
      Phil Somerville ... Phil - DEVGRU
      Nash Edgerton ... Nate - DEVGRU EOD
      Mike Colter ... Mike - DEVGRU
      Frank Grillo ... Squadron Commanding Officer
      Brett Praed ... DEVGRU Operator
      Aron Eastwood ... DEVGRU Operator
      Heemi Browstow ... DEVGRU Operator
      Chris Scarf ... DEVGRU Operator
      Barrie Rice ... DEVGRU Operator
      Robert Young ... DEVGRU Operator
      Spencer Coursen ... DEVGRU Operator
      Chris Perry ... DEVGRU Operator
      Alex Corbet Burcher ... DEVGRU Operator
      Robert G. Eastman ... DEVGRU Operator
      Tim Martin ... DEVGRU Operator
      Mitchell Hall ... DEVGRU Operator
      Alan Pietruszewski ... Pilot
      Kevin LaRosa Jr. ... Pilot
      M.D. Selig ... Pilot (as Michael David Selig)
      Benjamin John Parrillo ... Pilot (as Ben Parrillo)
      Christopher Stanley ... Admiral Bill McCraven
      Hadeel Shqair ... Abu Ahmed's Wife
      Noureddine Haijjoujou ... Abrar
      Nour Alkawaja ... Abrar's Wife
      Malika Sayd ... UBL Wife
      Siham Rida ... UBL Wife
      Monia Moula ... UBL Wife (as Moula Mounia)
      Zalfa Seurat ... UBL Wife
      Tarick Hadouch ... Khalid
      Ricky Sekhon ... UBL
      Mark Valley ... C-130 Pilot:
      Lee Asquith-Coe ... Sean Cohen (uncredited)
      Shabana Azmi ... (uncredited)
      Greg Bennett ... CIA Agent (uncredited)
      James Garson Chick ... Navy Seal (uncredited)
      Grant Chism ... CIA Employee (uncredited)
      Nick Donald ... CIA Agent (uncredited)
      Jo Hart ... CIA Operative (uncredited)
      Josh Kelly ... (uncredited)
      James Lowe ... CIA Agent (uncredited)
      Sean Mahon ... (uncredited)
      Damien Moreno ... Shooter #2 (uncredited)
      Nathan Nolan ... Prince Pilot 52 (uncredited)
      Michael C. Pierce ... American Businessman (uncredited)
      Alan D. Purwin ... Helicopter Pilot (uncredited)
      George Russo ... (uncredited)
      Jasper Salon ... CIA Tech (uncredited)
      Senem Temiz ... CIA Agent (uncredited)
      Omid Zader ... Shooter #1 (uncredited)

      Produced
      Kathryn Bigelow .... producer
      Mark Boal .... producer
      Matthew Budman .... co-producer
      Megan Ellison .... producer
      Jonathan Leven .... co-producer
      Tabrez Noorani .... line producer: India
      Pravesh Sahni .... associate producer: India
      Ted Schipper .... executive producer
      Greg Shapiro .... executive producer
      David Ticotin .... associate producer
      Colin Wilson .... executive producer

      Writing Credits
      Mark Boal (written by)

      Original Music
      Alexandre Desplat

      Cinematography
      Greig Fraser

      Trivia
      Joel Edgerton was originally cast in a leading role, but dropped out due to scheduling conflicts and was replaced by Jason Clarke. However, when the conflicts were resolved, Edgerton was able to return in another role.

      Rooney Mara was originally cast but had to drop out and was replaced by Jessica Chastain.

      At one point, Tom Hardy, Idris Elba and Guy Pearce were considered for different roles. Hardy was replaced by Mark Strong.

      "Zero Dark Thirty" in military terms means 12:30 AM. Zero Dark is midnight, 00:00 on a 24 hour clock, 30 being added to connote 30 minutes past. In the scene during the raid you can see Maya look at the clock being shown as 00:30.

      The movie was originally about the unsuccessful decade-long manhunt for Osama bin Laden. The screenplay was completely re-written after bin Laden was killed.

      James Cameron, ex-husband of eventual director Kathryn Bigelow, was previously in negotiations to direct the film, but dropped out to produce the sequels to Avatar.

      This is Jeremy Hindle 's first feature-film work as production designer. Hindle previously collaborated with Australian cinematographer Greig Fraser on numerous TV commercial shoots. Director Bigelow lauded Hindle for his remarkably precise re-creation of the huge bin Laden compound - built from scratch in the Jordanian desert - in less than three months.

      Jordan and the Indian city Chandigarh (capital of Punjab & Haryana states), near the Pakistani border, were used as stand-ins to duplicate scenes taking place in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Some second-unit film footage was also actually shot in Pakistan.

      In 'No Easy Day,' the first-hand account of the attack and killing of Osama bin Laden, written by a member of the SEALs team, the movie's lead character of CIA agent Maya, is known only as 'Jen.'

      The climactic sequence devoted to the raid on Osama's compound runs about 25 minutes, only a few minutes less than the real-life SEALs assault.

      In an unusual step, acting CIA Director Michael Morell issued a statement about the film emphasizing that while the production team had met with the CIA, the film is a dramatization and is not historically accurate. Morell specifically contradicted the film's assertion that "enhanced interrogation techniques", also known as "torture", had been of significant benefit in locating Osama bin Laden. Director Morell stated, "That impression is false. We cannot allow a Hollywood film to cloud our memory."

      In the Kuwait Lamborghini showroom scene, Dan asks if one of the cars is a Balboni. This refers to the Gallardo LP 550-2 Valentino Balboni, a limited-production variant of the Gallardo named after a Lamborghini test driver. It is the car with the stripe along its centerline.

      The stealth helicopters used in the actual mission were heavily modified Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawks. Anti-radar cladding, like that of the F-117 stealth fighter, helped them avoid detection by Pakistani air defenses, and the extra blades in the main rotors and tail rotors produced less noise than the standard rotors.

      Several important factors in the preparation and execution of the raid, as detailed in the book "No Easy Day", were glossed over or not mentioned in this film. These include, specifically, 1) the debate over whether to bomb the compound or conduct a special forces raid, 2) the construction of a complete training mockup of the compound in North Carolina and repeated drills using the same SEAL teams and helicopters as on the eventual raid, and 3) the presence of backup Black Hawks at a forward staging area during the mission, which proved to be vital to recovering the team after the crash of the stealth Black Hawk during the initial insertion. It is assumed these were left out for dramatic purposes.

      The bizarre, four-lens night vision goggles worn by SEAL Team Six are in fact, authentic. They are cutting-edge GPNVG-18 (Ground Panoramic Night Vision Goggles) manufactured by L-3 Warrior Systems. The extra lenses provide more peripheral vision to the operator.

      Of the many books she researched in preparation for her role as CIA operative Maya, Jessica Chastain found two of particular interest, namely, "The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11" by Lawrence Wright and "Osama Bin Laden" by Michael Scheuer.

      Jessica Chastain has permanently saved a voice mail from director Kathryn Bigelow in which Chastain learned she had been chosen to play the role of Maya. The message came on November 21 at 1:04 p.m.

      In January 2013, on the brink of the movie's wider release, three politically active members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Martin Sheen, David Clennon and Edward Asner, announced they were organizing a public condemnation of Zero Dark Thirty for what they termed its "tolerance" of torture.

      The film's title has four meanings according to a publicity flier for the picture. It states: "ZERO DARK THIRTY is a military term for thirty minutes after midnight - as well as code for "under the cover of darkness." It is also the time that the Navy Seals helicopters took to the skies on their mission to eliminate the world's most wanted man [Osama bin Laden]. Finally, it serves as a metaphor for the decade long, relentless pursuit of Osama bin Laden".

      The writer, director and producer and many of the production crew all worked on the earlier film The Hurt Locker.

      Goofs
      Jump to: Character error (1) | Continuity (2) | Errors in geography (1) | Factual errors (6) | Revealing mistakes (1) | Spoilers (1)
      Character error
      On several occasions, Maya pronounces the city of Peshawar "PESH-a-war". The correct pronunciation, even by Westerners, is "peh-SHOWER". An expert in that region would certainly know that.

      Continuity
      At the start of the water-boarding scene, During Dan's second interrogation of Ammar, he puts on gloves to adjust the rope, and then 10 seconds later when he picks up the towel the gloves are missing. When they are on the floor the gloves are back in his pocket.

      When the Jordanian CIA asset is approaching the camp, he is in a white car, is waved through security, zig zags through the concrete barriers, but when it pulls up to the building, it is dark red.

      Errors in geography
      When they are chasing the messenger down in the streets of 'Pakistan' there is a wide view of the street and you can clearly see an Indian flag flying in the background.

      Factual errors
      During the raid on bin Laden's compound, some neighboring houses are shown with lights going on in different rooms as the neighbors become aware of the activity in the compound. In Mark Owen's book, "No Easy Day" and also in the reports on the raid from the New York Times, all the electricity in the neighborhood had been cut a short time before the start of the raid.

      The breed of dog used in the actual capture of Osama Bin Laden was a Belgian Malinois. The breed of dog used in the movie is a German Shepherd.

      The QRF helicopter in which the SEALs are extracted is shown to be a single, MH-6OK Black Hawk when in fact the QRF consisted of three Chinook helicopters from the 160th SOAR. Most likely MH-47e.

      For the 7/7 London bus bomb the movie clearly shows a bus marked 172 to St Paul's. A few scenes late the TV commentator on the news channel refers to it as the number 10 bus. The actual bus the blew up was the number 30. Also at the time three bombs had gone off on London Underground meaning there would have been emergency vehicle sirens sounding in the area not the quiet of a normal day.

      When the CIA agent asks help from his Kuwaiti asset in Kuwait city, the setting is in a bar, with girls dancing and drinks in hand. Alcohol is still strictly forbidden and there are no bars or dance clubs in Kuwait.

      Pakistanis speak Urdu, English and other regional languages and not Arabic.

      Revealing mistakes
      At the start of the Area-51 scene, an aircraft engineer is using a ratchet spanner/wrench - the sound when he turns the wrench is the ratchet (free/no-torque) so the nut/bolt is not being turned. However he then removes the spanner/wrench from the nut/bolt and performs the same action again (clicking the ratchet). The nut/bolt would never be turned if this was actually what was happening.

      Factual errors
      In the movie, Bin Laden's beard is gray. In former ST6 member Mark Owen's book about the raid on Bin Laden's compound, he expresses surprise to see that when actually standing over UBL's body his beard had been dyed jet black.

      Memorable Quotes

      Filming Locations
      London, England, UK
      (London and Washington, DC scenes)
      Patiala, Punjab, India
      Manimajra Fort, Chandigarh, Punjab, India
      (Abottabad, Pakistan)
      Chandigarh, Punjab, India
      (Lahore, Pakistan)
      Amman, Jordan
      (Islamabad, Pakistan)

      Watch this Trailer

      Zero Dark Thirty
      Best Wishes
      Keith
      London- England

      The post was edited 10 times, last by ethanedwards ().

    • Re: (New Review) Classic War Movies- To Hell and Back (1955)

      Zero Dark Thirty is a 2012 American historical drama film directed by Kathryn Bigelow
      and written by Mark Boal. Billed as "the story of history's greatest manhunt for the world's most dangerous man,"
      the film is a dramatization of the American operation that killed Osama bin Laden.
      It was produced by Boal, Bigelow, and Megan Ellison,
      and stars Jessica Chastain, Jason Clarke, Joel Edgerton, Chris Pratt,
      Jennifer Ehle, Mark Strong, Kyle Chandler,
      and Édgar Ramírez.
      It was independently financed by Ellison's Annapurna Pictures.
      The film had its premiere in Los Angeles, California on December 18, 2012
      and had its wide release on January 11, 2013

      Zero Dark Thirty was released to wide critical acclaim and was nominated for five Academy Awards
      at the 85th Academy Awards including Best Picture, Best Actress (Jessica Chastain)
      and Best Original Screenplay. Zero Dark Thirty also earned four Golden Globe Award
      nominations including Best Picture – Drama, Best Director, and Best Actress – Drama for Chastain,
      which she won.
      It has attracted praise as well as controversy and strong criticism
      for its allegedly pro-torture stance and for allegedly obtaining improper access to classified materials.

      User Review
      Superb film-making
      1 February 2013 | by rogerdarlington (United Kingdom)

      The title is never explained, but it is military jargon for 30 minutes after midnight, the time that the raid on the Abbottabad compound was launched, and apparently it refers also to the darkness and secrecy that cloaked the entire decade-long mission to capture or kill al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden (or "USB" as he is referred to sometimes in the movie). The film reunites the winning team of director Kathryn Bigelow and writer Mark Boal, who were responsible for the brilliant "The Hurt Locker", and who have now produced a stunning piece of work.

      When bin Laden was eliminated by SEAL Team Six on 2 May 2011, it was obvious that there would soon be a film about the exploit, but few would have guessed that the director would be a woman, the lead character would also be a woman, the focus would be on the intelligence-gathering operation rather than the military planning of the raid, and the whole thing would be so lacking in machismo and so non-triumphalist. All these unexpected features, plus outstanding acting, brilliant cinematography and superb sound, make this a superlative exercise in film-making.

      The narrative is in the form of a triptych: a deeply disturbing set of interrogations involving torture, a painstaking and obsessive pursuit of intelligence links to the courier, and then the audacious raid into Pakistani territory under the noses of the country's equivalent to West Point (depicted in almost real time). Linking the three segments is Maya, the female CIA analyst on whom we have no background information, played by Jesica Chastain who confirms her status as one of the finest actresses of her generation.

      In this long, but gripping, film, only one scene did not work for me: when a CIA chief lambasts his team for failing to find their man. This scene apart, the whole movie is utterly absorbing in its authentic presentation. There are clearly conflations and mistakes in the telling of this true story, but it is clear that Bigelow and Boal have had access to people who know a lot about this unique operation and have helped the creation of a work of great verisimilitude and power
      .
      Best Wishes
      Keith
      London- England

      The post was edited 2 times, last by ethanedwards ().

    • Zero Dark Thirty

      Highly recommend this film to those who enjoy good war movies.

      The female lead (who in the movie is primarily responsible for locating bin Laden) does a magnificent job. I sure would like to see her win the Best Actress Oscar.

      Supposedly, the film is an accurate portrayal of the story behind Osama bin Laden's trackdown and extermination by the U.S. Navy Seals.
      De gustibus non est disputandum