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Zero Dark Thirty (2012)

R  |   |  Drama, History, Thriller  |  11 January 2013 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 205,337 users   Metascore: 95/100
Reviews: 634 user | 553 critic | 46 from Metacritic.com

A chronicle of the decade-long hunt for al-Qaeda terrorist leader Osama bin Laden after the September 2001 attacks, and his death at the hands of the Navy S.E.A.L.s Team 6 in May 2011.



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Won 1 Oscar. Another 83 wins & 156 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Wahab Sheikh ...
Detainee on Monitor
Detainee on Monitor
Nabil Elouahabi ...
Detainee on Monitor
Aymen Hamdouchi ...
Detainee on Monitor
Detainee on Monitor
Ali Marhyar ...
Interrogator on Monitor
Interrogator on Monitor


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 <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The greatest manhunt in history. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence including brutal disturbing images, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:

| |  »




Release Date:

11 January 2013 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Kill Bin Laden  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$40,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$417,150 (USA) (21 December 2012)


$95,720,716 (USA) (29 March 2013)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


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


When Maya, Dan, and Jessica watch the news about the Al Qaeda attack in Saudi Arabia, as Maya turns towards Jessica and speaks with Dan behind her, Dan's left hand is rubbing the top of the table. When Jessica responds and the angle is from behind Jessica, both of Dan's hands are below the table. See more »


[first lines]
Dan: I own you, Ammar.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The filmmakers wish to especially acknowledge the sacrifice of those men, women, and families who were most impacted by the events depicted in this film: the victims and the families of the 9/11 attacks; as well as the attacks in the United Kingdom; the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad, Pakistan; in Khobar, Saudi Arabia; and at the Camp Chapman Forward Operating Base in Afghanistan. We also wish to acknowledge and honor the many extraordinary military and intelligence professionals and first responders who have made the ultimate sacrifice. See more »


Referenced in Saturday Night Live: Jennifer Lawrence/The Lumineers (2013) See more »


Written by Traditional
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Better than Argo
16 May 2013 | by (Washington, D.C.) – See all my reviews

I've seen all the reasons viewers (and some critics) dislike this film, but in my opinion it is infinitely superior to ARGO in its authenticity and dramatic quality. The final scenes, when the SEAL team, goes into Ben Laden's house, are brilliantly rendered. The idea of doing it mostly in the dark with flashes of illumination by "night vision" green is a brilliant touch, which most directors would never have attempted.

The performances by Jessica Chastain, of course, Jason Clark and Jennifer Ehle are top drawer and the torture scenes, while brutal, are necessary--because that's the way it happened. Congratulations to Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal for getting it right.

I don't want to put the knock on Argo, because I found it entertaining. But it's artificiality provides a distinct contrast with Zero Dark Thirity's authenticity, and authenticity wins.

39 of 71 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Dont understand the hate for this! gordonwilson1
Why didn't ZDT make American Sniper kind of money? SpaceMonkey-Mafioso
learn the facts! owenryanhhs
So why did Argo win over this? jimmyr5595
Come on people, it's a f'ing movie... rommedahl-0603
Recruited out of high school pb-2
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