Review by Pat Burns
Sometimes you leave a theater feeling entertained or enlightened. Other times, you leave feeling as if you’ve truly experienced the film; become a participant in its story. Argo is that kind of a movie. It is very experiential and an emotional thrill throughout.
Directed by Ben Affleck, Argo is an incredibly intense suspense film. It’s loosely based on CIA agent (AKA Master of Disguise) Tony Mendez’s  account of the historical rescue of six U.S. diplomats from Tehran, Iran during the 1979 Iran hostage crisis.
Many GRAND readers probably experienced this event as I did in 1979. We were busy young parents, working and raising our little families and the Internet was not part of our daily lives. I vividly remember the Iranian revolution, the hostage crisis and the absurd length of time (444 days) the hostages were kept as prisoners. The details of the “Canadian Rescue” of the six US Diplomats, however, was a bit fuzzy. OK, I didn’t remember it at all. It was the same for the two ‘Boomer’ friends who went with me to see the movie and, for that matter, most of the audience.
Seeing Argo is not only a great movie experience, it’s also a captivating study of American history. It illustrates the considerable role that “out-of-the-box” thinkers play in making things happen, then and now.
The films props, wardrobe and hairstyles perfectly transport the viewer to that time of big mustaches, wide collars and enormous eyewear. Alan Arkin and John Goodman both delivered brilliant performances. They provided badly-needed comic relief from this mostly knee-bouncing, high-intensity film.
Oscar buzz is already swarming Ben Affleck and this film. The entire cast does an outstanding job. Argo is deserving of at least the nomination and perhaps winning the coveted golden statue.
Argo stars Ben Affleck, Bryan Cranston, Alan Arkin and John Goodman, and was released October 12, 2012. The film was co-produced by George Clooney and Grant Heslov.
Spoiler alert – Be sure to stay for the film credits. First, it’s cool to see how closely the actors playing the roles resembled the actual rescued diplomats. Second, the voice-over commentary during the credits is very enlightening and a real surprise.