Inspired by true events & based off author Mitchell Zuckoff's 2014 book of the same name, this biographical war film follows the story of six members of Global Response Staff (GRS), who fought to defend the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, during Ansar al-Sharia militant's attacks on September 11, 2012. Without spoiling the movie directed & produced by Michael Bay, too much; the motion picture was hatred by most of the Libyan people due to their negative portrayal. To the film's credit, I have to disagree with them, the audience does see many Muslims grieving and mourning the deaths, cause by the attacks and held signs apologizing for the extremists' violent acts. Adding on that, we do see several locals assisting the Americans. If anything, people should be angrier at the flick for being very clunky with overbearing visual special effects, chaotic camerawork & gratuitous explosions, macho sex appeal, and out of place, product placement such as 'Call of Duty' video games and cars from Mercedes-Benz. However, the worst had to be the utter lack of substance & character development within the main subjects. I can hardly remember, any of the GRS members, besides semi fictional Jack Da Silva (John Krasinski), whom comedic actor really did go all out for this role, by bulking up. Krasinski was very surprising, convincing as a serious gritty soldier. It's very unique. Don't get me wrong, the other performers did alright in the acting department as well, it's just that the personalities & charisma of their characters seem to all blended into one, during the quieter moments of the movie. None of them, stood out. They lack diversities. It didn't help that the film focus too much on overfilled action scenes, involving fictional previous missions that GRS went through, while in Libya, rather than establishing more of their family units & the warnings signs, leading to the compound attack. Their actions throughout the film didn't seem heartfelt, despite Lorne Balfe's amazing nail bitingly dramatic score. '13 Hours' really did missed some good moments to show us, how truly deep their sacrifice were. It only had surface level depiction of heroism; which is sad. Still, I like how the Rated R war film does not shy away from the gory, bloody images of war and the harsh language. I also dig the mixer of real life news archive footage of the event, with the reenactments. It gave the film a lot of authentic, unlike his other war film, 2001's "Pearl Harbor', which borderline romantic fantasy. Surprisingly, this combat movie is little more historical accurate after the first half. However, there were some jarring things that screenwriter, Chuck Hogan & Michael Bay put in the film that really did not belong. Some examples are the way, the film constantly berating the CIA & Diplomatic Security (DS) agents outside from these private military contractors, as stuck up villainy cowardly pricks with no concept of tactical awareness. This is far from real life, as testimony shows, that both government agencies acted heroic, given the situation. While, it is true, that both groups ignore warnings like when two former security guards for the consulate, threw an IED over the consulate fence in April 2012; & just four days later, a similar bomb was thrown at a four-vehicle convoy carrying the United Nations Special Envoy to Libya, exploding twelve feet from the UN envoy's vehicle. There is little evidence that those assembles, including the Obama administration top heads deliberate sabotage themselves furthermore, by not providing air cover and ground support, that night; in order to cover up, the intelligence that the CIA was covertly shipping arms from Libya to Syria. Things like the over the top, stick in the mud, disrespectful, ineffective twit Chief-of-Station Commander, 'Bob' (David Costabile) trying to tell the men to stand down is clearly false. In real life, they were only little tactical disagreements between them about the speed with which the GRS team should depart for the rescue, not full grown hatred for each other. As for no air support argument; that is also not true, as government agencies did sent a surveillance drone to do a number of flybys, throughout the night & early morning. The reason for this, was due to the fact that there were no nearby attack aircraft on high alert that night with weapons & fuel within a 10 hour flight to Libya, because of a major maintenance overhaul. While, it's true that the closest fighter planes to trouble spots in North Africa were based in Aviano, Italy. Unlike the film, those fighter planes there, were not ready. Misleading viewpoints like these, were the reasons why some of the things told by the perspective of the soldiers were debunked in the ten investigations by different agencies on the matter. That's the problem with '13 Hours'. It's specifically composed, only by the unchecked bravado perspective of the soldiers, rather than everybody involved in the rescue mission. It's a bit one sided. Bay should had research more about the event from multiply sources including the FBI; the one by an independent board commissioned by the State Department; two by Democrat-controlled Senate Committees; and six by Republican-controlled House Committee, rather than taking the one book source material at its word. In the end, moviegoers should know, while, Bay says the film purposefully steers clear of politics. It's really not. You can clearly, see, where they stand on the issue, based off, how they market the film. Not only was this film about a controversial foreign incident released during an extremely contentious election year, with movie studios specifically marketed it to conservatives; but it also screen by key Republican Party figureheads, hoping to generate endorsement quotations. In the end, this film might have help cost, Hillary Clinton, the election, even with it being a box office bomb. Despite that & some flaws. '13 Hours' is still watchable, during its 2 hour & 24 minute runtime. It's worth checking out.
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