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Argo (2012)

R  |   |  Drama, History, Thriller  |  12 October 2012 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 419,141 users   Metascore: 86/100
Reviews: 682 user | 649 critic | 45 from Metacritic.com

Acting under the cover of a Hollywood producer scouting a location for a science fiction film, a CIA agent launches a dangerous operation to rescue six Americans in Tehran during the U.S. hostage crisis in Iran in 1980.



(screenplay), (based on a selection from "The Master of Disguise" by) (as Antonio J. Mendez) , 1 more credit »
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Won 3 Oscars. Another 83 wins & 144 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:


In 1979, the American embassy in Iran was invaded by Iranian revolutionaries and several Americans were taken hostage. However, six managed to escape to the official residence of the Canadian Ambassador and the CIA was ordered to get them out of the country. With few options, exfiltration expert Tony Mendez devised a daring plan: create a phony Canadian film project looking to shoot in Iran and smuggle the Americans out as its production crew. With the help of some trusted Hollywood contacts, Mendez created the ruse and proceeded to Iran as its associate producer. However, time was running out with the Iranian security forces closing in on the truth while both his charges and the White House had grave doubts about the operation themselves. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Based on the Declassified True Story See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and some violent images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:




Release Date:

12 October 2012 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Escape from Tehran  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$44,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$19,458,109 (USA) (12 October 2012)


$136,019,448 (USA) (19 April 2013)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (Extended Version)

Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The story of the rescue was first filmed in 1981 as Escape from Iran: The Canadian Caper (1981) by director Lamont Johnson. See more »


When Tony Mendez and Jack O'Donnell go to the Office of the Secretary of State there is a woman typing at a desk, at the front of the desk there is an envelope with two stamps on it, one stamp is a 37 cent American flag design which was first used in 2002, the other is a 2 cent stamp issued in 2006 depicting Navajo jewelry. In 1980 a first class stamp cost 15 cents. See more »


[first lines]
Sahar: [narration] This is the Persian Empire known today as Iran. For 2,500 years, this land was ruled by a series of kings, known as shahs. In 1950, the people of Iran elected Mohammad Mossadeqh, a secular democrat, as Prime Minister. He nationalized British and U.S. petroleum holdings, returning Iran's oil to it's people. But in 1953, the U.S. and Great Britain engineered a coup d'etat that deposed Mossadeqh and installed Reza Pahlavi as shah. The young Shah was known for opulence and ...
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Crazy Credits

As the end credits begin, a picture of the actual passport of each fake film crew member is displayed next to picture of the actor in the film, showing the similarities between the two faces. Then archive photos from the period are displayed next to pictures shot for the film. See more »


References Forbidden Planet (1956) See more »


Abwoon Call to Prayer
Written and Performed by 'Jahanara Laura Mangus'
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Intense Film Packed With Emotion
24 February 2013 | by (Worcester, England) – See all my reviews

Argo is the political thriller based on the 1979 Iranian hostage situation in which 6 Americans were left to fend for themselves in the centre of Tehran. CIA Operative Tony Mendez (played by Ben Affleck) is sent into Iran to evacuate the Americans out safely under the cover of being a film production crew working on a picture called 'Argo'.

The film is absolutely amazing and definitely one of the best films I've seen in a long time, throughout 2012 and 2013 so far we have been treated with some great films such as Skyfall, Django Unchained, Life of Pi, Les Miserables, Zero Dark Thirty and more, but in my own personal opinion Argo takes the bait as the best of them all. Proof is present as it won 3 BAFTA's for best picture, best director and best editing, also nominated for a further 8 Oscars in 85th Academy Awards.

The film is packed with a sense of threat, peril and intensity all portrayed exceptionally well through the ensemble cast including Ben Affleck (The Town), John Goodman (Big Lebowski), Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad), Alan Arkin (Edward Scissorhands) and Victor Garber (Titanic). The ending is by far the most intense ending I have seen in a long time, visually presented in such an astounding way.

Director Ben Affleck started out his auteur career after his directional debut Gone Baby Gone became critically acclaimed, three years later The Town came out with an Oscar nomination. Now 2 years on we have Argo, Affleck's best film by far.

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