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Zero Dark Thirty (2012)

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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 87 wins & 170 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Dan
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Jack
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Thomas
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J.J.
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Detainee on Monitor
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Detainee on Monitor
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Detainee on Monitor
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Detainee on Monitor
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Detainee on Monitor
Ali Marhyar ...
Interrogator on Monitor
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Interrogator on Monitor
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Storyline

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

Taglines:

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:

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Details

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Release Date:

11 January 2013 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Kill Bin Laden  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$40,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

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

Gross:

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

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Technical Specs

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1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jordan and the Indian city Chandigarh (capital of Punjab & Haryana states), near the Pakistani border, were used as stand-ins to duplicate scenes taking place in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Some second-unit film footage was also actually shot in Pakistan. See more »

Goofs

A sign board with Shimla (hill station in India), Panchkula (near Chandigarh,India) can be seen during the secret stalking of Abu Ahmed's white SUV by the CIA. See more »

Quotes

[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 »

Connections

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

Soundtracks

Night Song
Written by Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan
Performed by Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan & Michael Brook
Courtesy of Real World Records
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
The Straightforward Hunt
13 January 2013 | by (Los Banos, Laguna, Philippines) – See all my reviews

One's appeal for Zero Dark Thirty is to see how it depicts the search for Osama Bin Laden like it seems too impossible to find him, like he's probably already dead, or almost doesn't exist. Even though there are controversies going around and some revelations, the story is still all dramatized. Without a surprise from director Kathryn Bigelow, the film is totally electrifying and deliberately engrossing. There is humanity left in the end that made this a lot more compelling, but that's the last thing we should talk about. It never backs away from the promise and stays focus on the mission. Zero Dark Thirty is a powerfully gripping thriller.

It's a straightforward mission and only about the mission. We can see the main protagonist's obsession of capturing Bin Laden even without showing any backstories. She's brave, probably too brave, enough on what she's doing. They have to make difficult decisions to where are they gonna go or who are they gonna find. The film is indeed a dramatize version of the ten year hunt. It plays too much suspense and sudden shock, but no matter what, every tragic event are still portrayed in a completely terrifying way.

There is no doubt this film will fall into a controversy. It features a torture scene that many think they justify it. It is so talked about and was against it but it seems the scenes only exists nothing more than showing that sort of truth. The most awaited part of the movie is indeed the climax. Just like anyone would imagine, it's a silent and mercilessly violent raid. There's a lot of humanity in the character Maya. As much as she aggressively wanted to find her target, she still cannot stomach any brutal interrogation and tragedy happening on her associates and other people. Jessica Chastain manages to weigh all of her personalities. Other strong actors like Jason Clarke, Kyle Chandler, Jennifer Ehle, and Mark Strong keeps their roles effective as well.

Kathryn Bigelow's prominent style is slick tension. Here she displays danger in any place where the characters go like something will suddenly explode or a loud gunfire. The action scenes is filled with suspense. One of the sequences can be tad too ridiculous for this movie but it didn't ruin a single thing to the experience. When it takes place inside the CIA or a meeting, it gets undeniably absorbing. The screen writing makes sure it's factual enough and interesting.

People's expectations might mislead them. Zero Dark Thirty is not only about finding and killing Osama Bin Laden but it's also about one's obsession and revenge to this terrorist. In the end, there's plenty of guilt to express but that proves that they are still human beings. We could merit its brilliant filmmaking and strong storytelling that made it feel like we're part of the search. We all know this is just a dramatization of the true events but all the horrifying truths like the violence stays to the picture. It's a story with nobody calling themselves heroes even though they defeated their enemy. It depicts the darkest parts of its history. Some might wonder how worse it could have been but ignoring all the commotion, Zero Dark Thirty is still a compelling thriller.


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