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Argo (15) The CIA go on camera to save lives

By Gloucestershire Echo  |  Posted: November 09, 2012

John Goodman, Alan Arkin and Ben Affleck in Argo

John Goodman, Alan Arkin and Ben Affleck in Argo

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FICTION couldn't be any stranger than the truth in Argo, based on real-life events following the 1979 storming of the US Embassy in Tehran.

Ben Affleck is a deserved front runner for the Best Director statuette at next year's Academy Awards for his work on this gripping thriller that keeps us teetering on the edge of our seats for the entire two hours.

On November 4, 1979, simmering tensions outside the US embassy finally boil over. Militants break through the barricades and storm the building.

Iranians capture 52 Americans and hold them hostage but six staff escape to the Canadian ambassador's house, hiding in a crawl space while awaiting news.

Back on American soil, CIA extractor Tony Mendez (Affleck) concocts a scheme to rescue them by posing as a film producer who is in Iran scouting for locations. Taut pacing, slick editing and escalating tension are underpinned by emotionally wrought performances from a sensational ensemble cast.

Damon Smith

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