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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 202,777 users   Metascore: 95/100
Reviews: 633 user | 553 critic | 46 from

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 & 152 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 <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


For ten years one woman never stopped searching for the most wanted man 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
See  »

Did You Know?


Digital footage equivalent to 1.8 million feet film were shot at a similar notorious ratio of 100:1 (as with Apocalypse Now (1979) and The Hurt Locker (2008)). Co-editor William Goldenberg estimated that 1/8 of the total footage was on the climatic assault of Bin Laden's compound. The raid was shot at least twice, one on a normal moonlight illuminated compound and another on night vision mode. See more »


When they are chasing the messenger down in the streets of 'Pakistan' there is a wide view of the street and you can clearly see an Indian flag flying in the background. See more »


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

Crazy Credits

The opening Annapurna Pictures logo briefly appears as if seen through night vision goggles. See more »


Referenced in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #21.59 (2012) See more »


Pyaar Hai Tumse
Written by Amir Jamal, Nasir Hussain, Nasir Ali Nasir
Performed by Amir Jamal
Courtesy of Kamlee Records Limited
By arrangement with The Orchard
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

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.

38 of 68 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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