With a protagonist you lack the desire to root for and subject matter that's been shoved down our throats in the 11 years since 9/11, This is one of the only films this year where battling heavy eyelids is more exciting than the film itself.
Bigelow has hamstrung herself by not committing to a viewpoint. This is a by the numbers, cold, emotionally inert, just the "facts" procedural drama that is just barely a step above an episode of Law & Order.
Indulges Cheneyian fantasies complete with the bad-movie scene of the prisoner's defiance: "You're just a garbage man in the corporation," shouts the Arab who needs a lesson in manners from the Ph.D. (in torture?) who is racking him.
By showing scenes of torture without taking any kind of moral (as opposed to tactical) stand on what we are seeing, Bigelow has made an amoral movie -- which is, I would argue, an unconscionable approach to this material.
Bigelow and screenwriter Mark Boal shape history -- those breaks, big and small, that led to the killing of Osama bin Laden -- into one of the finest fact-based thrillers since "All the President's Men."