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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 1979.

Director:

Ben Affleck

Writers:

Chris Terrio (screenplay by), Tony Mendez (based on a selection from "The Master of Disguise" by) (as Antonio J. Mendez) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
968 ( 86)
Won 3 Oscars. Another 94 wins & 152 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ben Affleck ... Tony Mendez
Bryan Cranston ... Jack O'Donnell
Alan Arkin ... Lester Siegel
John Goodman ... John Chambers
Victor Garber ... Ken Taylor
Tate Donovan ... Bob Anders
Clea DuVall ... Cora Lijek
Scoot McNairy ... Joe Stafford
Rory Cochrane ... Lee Schatz
Christopher Denham ... Mark Lijek
Kerry Bishé ... Kathy Stafford
Kyle Chandler ... Hamilton Jordan
Chris Messina ... Malinov
Zeljko Ivanek ... Robert Pender
Titus Welliver ... Bates
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Storyline

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

Taglines:

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:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Persian | Arabic

Release Date:

12 October 2012 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Escape from Tehran See more »

Filming Locations:

McLean, Virginia, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$44,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$19,458,109, 14 October 2012, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$136,025,503

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$232,325,503
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Extended Version)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

For the opening scene, the Director of Photography gave 8mm cameras out to certain people in the crowd to make the opening scene have what would seem like this was actual footage from the riot. See more »

Goofs

In the establishing shot when Tony Mendez goes to Hollywood to seek help is the dilapidated HOLLYWOOD sign, which was indeed how the sign appeared in the mid-1970s after years of neglect. Since that sign was originally built in the 1920s, it was only planned as a temporary structure. However, the sign was refurbished and rebuilt with new letters in November 1978, which was a full year before the Iranian hostage crisis began. See more »

Quotes

[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 ...
See more »

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 »

Alternate Versions

After it screened at the Toronto International Film Festival the postscript at the end credits was changed because it was felt that it slighted the Canada's involvement in the rescue of the American hostages. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #22.22 (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Here Comes the Blues
(uncredited)
Music by Alan Hawkshaw
Courtesy of APM Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Vibrant blend of humor, tension, and history
12 October 2012 | by PycsSee all my reviews

'Argo' presents maybe the greatest, if not the most absurd, account of American foreign policy espionage widely unbeknownst to the greater majority. The story, which falls perfectly into the category of you-can't-make-this-kind-of-thing-up, is based upon Tony Mendez's rescue of six isolated US diplomats out of Iran, during the time of the Iranian hostage crisis of 1980, through the means of creating a fake film production as cover.

Director Ben Affleck proves here just how incredibly mature and restrained a filmmaker he's become, molding what is inherently a political story, yet wisely setting aside the politics. He masterfully handles the changes in tone very fluidly, from one moment being edge of your seat tension, to the next of inspired comic relief. It brings back memories of 70's thrillers, when craft and entertaining went together hand-in-hand.

The cast of veteran character-actors is worth the price of admission alone. Nearly every speaking role is occupied by a recognizable face, with the likes of Philip Baker Hall, Bob Gunton, Michael Parks, Kyle Chandler, John Goodman, Bryan Cranston, Alan Arkin, and more. This is easily the best cast of 2012 and, better yet, they all brought out there A game.

'Argo' is not a film to miss, its subject matter being more relevant than ever and will be a major contender come award season (and deservedly so.)

9/10 -Pycs


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