Zero Dark Thirty (2013)



Critic Consensus: Gripping, suspenseful, and brilliantly crafted, Zero Dark Thirty dramatizes the hunt for Osama bin Laden with intelligence and an eye for detail.

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For a decade, an elite team of intelligence and military operatives, working in secret across the globe, devoted themselves to a single goal: to find and eliminate Osama bin Laden. Zero Dark Thirty reunites the Oscar winning team of director-producer Kathryn Bigelow and writer-producer Mark Boal (The Hurt Locker) for the story of history's greatest manhunt for the world's most dangerous man. -- (C) Official Site
R (for strong violence including brutal disturbing images, and for language)
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Joel Edgerton
as Patrick - Squadron Team Leader
Edgar Ramirez
as Larry From Ground Branch
Kyle Chandler
as Joseph Bradley
Chris Pratt
as Justin - DEVGRU
James Gandolfini
as CIA Director
Fares Fares
as Hakim
Frank Grillo
as Squadron Commanding Officer
Jennifer Ehle
as Jessica
Nash Edgerton
as Nate - DEVGRU EOD
Reda Kateb
as Ammar
Jeremy Strong
as Thomas
Wahab Sheikh
as Detainee on Monitor
Alexander Karim
as Detainee on Monitor
Nabil Elouahabi
as Detainee on Monitor
Aymen Hamdouchi
as Detainee on Monitor
Simon Abkarian
as Detainee on Monitor
Ali Marhyar
as Interrogator on Monitor
Parker Sawyers
as Interrogator on Monitor
Akin Gazi
as Interrogator on Monitor
Derek Siow
as Interrogator on Monitor
Mohammad K.
as Cargo Ship Detainee
Henry Garrett
as Bagram Guard
Homayoun Ershadi
as Hassan Ghul
Darshan Aulakh
as Pakistani Detention Center Guard
Navdeep Singh
as Faraj Courier
Yoav Levi
as Abu Faraj Al-Libbi
Sukhdeep Singh
as Pakistani Guard at Marriott
Musa Sattari
as Humam Khalil Al-Balawi
David Menkin
as Case Officer
Eyad Zoubi
as Zied
Julian Lewis Jones
as Blackwater Guard
Christian Contreras
as CIA Security
Lauren Shaw
as Lauren
Zachary Becker
as Embassy Tech
John Antonini
as George
Fredric Lehne
as The Wolf
Ashraf Telfah
as Kuwaiti Businessman
Jonathan Olley
as Tech from Ground Branch
Ben Lambert
as N.S.A. Tech
Manraaj Singh
as Rawal Caller
Tushaar Mehra
as Abu Ahmed
Daniel Lapaine
as Tim - Station Chief
Udayan Baijal
as Guard at Maya's Apartment
Stephen Dillane
as National Security Advisor
John Schwab
as Deputy National Security Advisor
Martin Delaney
as Assistant to National Security Advisor
Nabil Koni
as Pakistani Doctor
Antony Edridge
as General in Hangar
Jeff Mash
as Deputy Director of C.I.A.
Taylor Kinney
as Jared - DEVGRU
Callan Mulvey
as Saber - DEVGRU
Siaosi Fonua
as Henry - DEVGRU
Phil Somerville
as Phil - DEVGRU
Mike Colter
as Mike - DEVGRU
Brett Praed
as DEVGRU Operator
Aron Eastwood
as DEVGRU Operator
Heemi Browstow
as DEVGRU Operator
Chris Scarf
as DEVGRU Operator
Barrie Rice
as DEVGRU Operator
Rob Young
as DEVGRU Operator
Spencer Coursen
as DEVGRU Operator
Chris Perry
as DEVGRU Operator
Alex Corbet Burcher
as DEVGRU Operator
Robert Eastman
as DEVGRU Operator
Tim Martin
as DEVGRU Operator
Mitchell Hall
as DEVGRU Operator
as DEVGRU Operator
Christopher Stanley
as Admiral Bill McCraven
Hadeel Shqair
as Abu Ahmed's Wife
Nour Alkawaja
as Abrar's Wife
Malika Sayed
as UBL Wife
Rida Siham
as UBL Wife
Moula Mounia
as UBL Wife
Zalfa Seurat
as UBL Wife
Mark Valley
as C-130 Pilot
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News & Interviews for Zero Dark Thirty

Critic Reviews for Zero Dark Thirty

All Critics (265) | Top Critics (51)

If you like World War II films, you'll enjoy this.

Full Review… | June 13, 2013
The New Republic
Top Critic

What's striking is the absence of triumphalism -- Bigelow doesn't shy away from showing the victims shot down in cold blood in the compound -- and we come away with the overwhelming sense that this has been a grim, dark episode in our history.

Full Review… | February 5, 2013
Top Critic

This is an instant classic.

Full Review… | January 15, 2013
Time Out
Top Critic

Chastain makes Maya as vivid as a bloodshot eye. Her porcelain skin, delicate features and feminine attire belie the steel within.

Full Review… | January 11, 2013
Toronto Star
Top Critic

No doubt Zero Dark Thirty serves a function by airing America's dirty laundry about detainee and torture programs, but in its wake, there's a crying need for a compassionate Coming Home to counter its brutal Deer Hunter.

Full Review… | January 10, 2013
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

While "Zero Dark Thirty" may offer political and moral arguing points aplenty, as well as vicarious thrills,as a film it's simply too much of a passable thing.

Full Review… | January 10, 2013
Detroit News
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Zero Dark Thirty


What defines this film is its controversial depiction of torture,but what it unearths is much more harrowing and heroic than terrifying. The story revolves around CIA agent Maya, who aims to finish a decades long manhunt for Osama bin Laden while stationed in Pakistan, starting in 2003. Critics are inarguably split on whether they believe the torture depicted in this film is shown as essential in the capture of wanted terrorists, or an accurate portrayal of torture tactics in all their inhumane glory. The characters in the film certainly feel that torturing detainees helps in the process, but it's left vague whether the filmmaker supports this tactic. The story is entertaining on its own merit, helped by the ferocious performance of Chastain, and the unraveling of the mystery right before our eyes. The intricacy of bin Laden's extraction at the hands of the Navy SEAL team was especially interesting to watch, and was supposedly very truthful in its depiction. There's an emotional component for anyone imbibed in post-9/11 dialogue, but there's also entertainment in the planning and investigation behind the scenes.

Spencer S.
Spencer S.

Super Reviewer

Not my favorite subject matter, but watched it anyway because of the reviews. I thought that it was strong in terms of acting but I just couldn't buy the fact that they went after bin Laden on a hunch by one single CIA agent. But of course, they had to do it this way because if not then it would've been a documentary I suppose. I think the story to be told is intriguing and relevant but the filmmakers just didn't satisfy me with this adaptation.

Wildaly M
Wildaly M

Super Reviewer


Zero Dark Thirty is the true life story centred around the obsessive CIA analyst who was most responsible for locating Osama Bin Laden. Katheryn Bigelow's Oscar winner is very much like a combination of her previous film The Hurt Locker and The Wire. The bulk of the film is made up of cold-war style spy-duggery as telephones are tapped and suspects trailed to the door of America's most wanted. In fact she does not shy away from the dubious tactics employed by the US in extracting information from its persons of interest, although one would have to say that although the film does not condone these actions, it falls short of condemning them as well. This information gathering section of the film can feel a little dry and over long because of the lack of human drama, but it's all leading up to a nail biting, documentary-style piece de resistance as we participate in the raid on Bin Laden's compound in gripping detail, which Bigelow presents as little more than an execution than a fire fight. I was dubious of the central character's emotional outburst at the close, as if a woman were only capable of emotionally expressing herself through tears, but it's a fascinating piece of recent history that is refreshing in its lack of gung-ho, US of A brand flag waving.

xGary Xx
xGary Xx

Super Reviewer

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