13 Hours (2016) Poster

(2016)

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8/10
13 Hours that didn't have to be...
Skiis4Life19 January 2016
For the movie I gave it an 8. That's based on 32 years of military service, 7 combat tours (3 in Iraq) and working with the likes of the characters in the movie. Sorry for those who's lives were so well protected that they've never been exposed to the likes of us but, that's how we talk and act. It's a type-A environment and we use it to protect ourselves and motivate our brothers in arms.

I am well versed on the facts as provided by the MSM however, as someone in the biz I also know that the fly in the ointment are the facts.

1. The firing of mortars is an art and the mortar launcher has to be anchored to the ground or every mortar will land off target. The mortars landing on the CIA compound are dead accurate and also require spotters to assist with any corrections.

2. Aviano AB, Italy is about 2-hours away. Had they been launched, even if only to do a low fly-by, would have driven off the attackers; just like I used them in Iraq in Mosul, Tikrit, and Baghdad. I don't know why the Commander of the 555 (Triple Nickel) didn't launch. It's one of the big questions that remain unanswered by the media or the movie.

3. Hillary's statement that, "Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night who decided they'd go kill some Americans?" was a red herring. Because it was neither. As later testimony bore out, it was a planned, coordinated, terrorist attack on the anniversary of 9/11.

4. All UAS aircraft are armed. As stated in the movie could have assisted in the defense of the embassy or the CIA compound.

5. General Ham, AfricaCom CC is someone I worked with in Mosul in 2004 for 6-months. Good guy and I know from my experience he would not hesitate to act if allowed. One day he'll give an interview and get his whole story. Can't wait...

Rick274 Colonel (Retired) 274ASOS/CC
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8/10
Beyond any BS - Unexpected Excellence
featheredsun4 June 2016
Benghazi.

In this age of bitter rhetoric, the name conjures all manner of furor and blame. A small stinging wound to honor and prestige - a name to carry hate and zealotry.

Michael Bay, OF ALL PEOPLE, was able to peer into the 2012 attack on US diplomatic and intelligence resources, and capture one hell of a war story. Going into this movie, I expected a number of things. Among them were gratuitous explosions, jingoistic flag waving, and tough-guy tired clichés. I did not get what I was expecting.

Instead, Bay, his cast, and his filmmaking team have brought out a solid, technically informed, faithfully rendered account of those who were caught in the conflagration - how they found themselves there, how they fought for their lives, and how they made it out...or didn't. There's no political agenda here. The only agenda is to show warriors (who are also real people, with cares, and hopes and flaws) engaged in struggle, with all the courage, and luck, horror, and terrible splendor that is timeless.

And in the end, there's no war worship - only somber reflection on the nature of struggle, and what it does to these warriors. This is a clear and worthy work for that. Bravo.
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9/10
Intense movie, that raises almost as many questions as the answers that it provides.
dlevans-5274313 January 2016
I found this movie to be very intense and riveting. The audience seemed to have a need to make an unusual number of trips to the snack bar and rest room and I found myself becoming frustrated by the number of interruptions. The movie is not for the faint of heart, as there are a number of scenes with graphic depiction of injuries. Regardless of your political affiliation, if you have any thoughts about what happened at Benghazi, you need to see this movie. Michael Bay does a great job of portraying what happened. Additionally, with the exception of one individual who s portrayed as not wanting to take action, he does not take the obvious opportunity to lay blame at any single individual in the US government. He clearly portrays a small group of men as heroes. Without their courage and willingness to fight against what appears to be an overwhelming force many more lives would have been lost. I do not often see movies twice, but this movie is likely to be an exception... In closing, if Michael Bay is 90% accurate in his depiction of what happened, our government (the US government), owes a huge debt of gratitude and an apology for their lack of action to 6 very brave men.
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10/10
Just put politics aside and watch it
phd_travel18 February 2016
As polarizing as this movie is just put your politics aside and watch it. The attack is a part of history that deserves to be put on screen in as grand and well produced manner as can be. And in that sense it succeeds. The filming in Morocco and Malta captures a really on location feel.

The battles are well done and engaging, not over the top. It was a bit confusing at times distinguishing the main characters. Maybe they shouldn't have had beards for the movie because it made them look alike. Jon Krasinski and James Badge Dale, Max Martini and Dominic Fumusa are all good as the heroes. There is just enough background with kids and wives shown to put a human element to the people. Whatever your politics is, they were brave. Liked Jon Krasinki's characters statement about dying over there at the end.

The journey under fire from the embassy to the annex was gripping. The prolonged gunfire and mortar attack on the annex was quite scary too. It was chaotic but as long as you kept the 2 compounds separate in your mind it was okay. Initially, a little bit less back and forth between scenarios would have been better.

There are the "bad" good guys - the incompetent CIA people especially the chief who gives the infamous and disputed "Stand down" order. Wish they had shown a bit more of the Ambassador's death and recovery of his body but maybe it was just too disheartening for the screen.

Some people against the movie are probably just unhappy it was made in the first place. Apart from the stand down and request for air support it isn't too directly critical of the administration. There might not be a way to make a movie about Benghazi that actually could make the haters happy.

Watch this movie.
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8/10
The movie is not political at all and mainly focus on the soldiers decisions. I liked it more than I expected to.
cosmo_tiger4 June 2016
"Things change fast here in Benghazi." Jack Silva (Krasinski) has just been reassigned as a guard for the US diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya. What starts off as a routine assignment changes on September 11, 2012. When a group of insurgents breach the Embassy and attempt to kill the US Ambassador, Jack and his group of 6 have to make a decision. Follow orders and stay away, or disobey their commander and go help their fellow soldiers. I was looking forward to watching this, but I was also a little worried at the same time. The story is interesting and somewhat controversial and is a perfect idea for a movie, but it was directed by Michael Bay. For that reason I was expecting a lot of special effects and explosions and didn't think he was the director that should be in charge of this story. I'm not ashamed to admit that I was wrong. This is a realistic war movie that doesn't embellish the drama or actions, mainly because the story didn't need it. The movie is not political at all and mainly focus on the soldiers decisions. I liked it more than I expected to. Overall, not just a surprisingly good Michael Bay movie, a good movie period. I give this a high B+.
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An Absolute MUST See... Michael Bay actually pulled it off!?! A remarkable film.
ThomasMagnumPI15 January 2016
Telling this story needed to be done and done right. Amazingly, Michael Bay achieves true greatness with this effort. I'm overwhelmed because no one could have known Bay had this movie in him as a director.

This is a masterful film in almost every aspect and certainly in every way that truly matters. Maybe knowing the real life set up and cover up to these events helps elevate the appreciation of what hits the screen but the film holds up well even if a viewer is unaware of world affairs. The premeditated, brutal attack in 2012 on two United States installations in Benghazi, Libya is a dark chapter in not only the war on terror but in U.S. history in general. Expertly depicting the events surrounding those attacks with such tension and emotion is a credit to this film and those that made it. This includes the remarkable cast who each were superb in their roles. Maybe the first act was a bit long as characters were established and maybe the over use of shaky cam early can be considered technical flaws but when a story is this well told and this well crafted, flaws like that fall quickly by the waste side.

The movie draws you in and makes you feel like you were there on that fateful night. Without getting overly political, it informs the viewer of what happened in riveting detail. It leaves the "why did this happen and who is to blame" for the viewer to decide. The courage on display and the charisma of those that serve comes across in a big way. That (along with current political consequences) is reason enough why this story needed to be told. Thank God that they did it justice.
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9/10
True Heroes
culebrapeak13 January 2016
Warning: Spoilers
The overall experience of the World Premiere was incredible, but this Movie in any venue would be worth the price of admission.

Like most, I've seen hoards of "Action Movies", but the compressed time line and episodic nature of this one puts you into a pressure cooker that leaves you drained at the end. Probably more firepower per minute than in any true life account ever shown on the Big Screen.

In the final moments, though, you realize just how much these men lost. Few if any other team of six would have survived such relentless and massive assaults. But more than anything, it will force you to ask yourself why our government literally left these men and the people they saved, to die.
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9/10
Riviting Authenticity
GulforDie13 January 2016
Riveting Authenticity is the first feeling I had when the movie ended. After watching these events unfold. If you don't feel for these real life men, soldiers, heroes, Americans.... You may want to consider a frontal lobotomy. Or just stop reading and/or watching anything political. This work is best viewed after removing the talking points/ talking heads. Only recount the actual time line of events from the Bengasi hearings on c-span. This work gives a mega phone to those who's voices where dismissed and a heart to those who can never speak again. Michael Bay clearly did the right thing by taking direction from those who where actually there. That is evident throughout the movie and really gives a heightened authenticity. One of the best historical war movies ever. Several emotions smack you hard throughout this movie. The acting was very well done by pretty much everyone. John Krasinski probably impressed me the most. I have not enjoyed much of anything he has done since the office. This is a rare film in that I will want to see again. I hope this work can help heal a country that was stabbed in the gut by the attempt to muddle the facts from that day.
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10/10
13 Hour: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi
SaritaLW13 January 2016
I had to give the movie 13 Hours a solid 10. I am a huge fan of true stories and movies that are based off books, especially when the story is filmed true to the real. This thrill riveting masterpiece not only captivated the lives of these six soldiers and the people trapped between this battle between the Libyan rebels, but Michael Bay did an excellent job with his use of guns and sound system that he always does so well. You can't help but stay on the edge of your seats as you hope these brave men all make it to the end of the movie. This movie has non stop violence while these heroic soldiers attempt to rescue the ambassador as well as help the American residents escape. This movie will have you racing against time as we relive this Sept 11, 2012 event also called the "Battle of Benghazi."
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9/10
Makes a strong statement
Lynnpryor-878-99288423 January 2016
I'm not a fan of Michael Bay movies. So many of his movies seem to be more explosions than plot. I leave the theater reeling from an overdose of special effects. With 13 Hours, though, Bay has delivered a well-done movie. Sure, it's still packed with a lot of explosives, but they are central to the story.

The story centers on the September 11, 2012 attack on the American compound at Benghazi, Libya. The news pundits and everyone with an opinion have been discussing these events for two years. What did the President know? What did the Secretary of State know? What could've been done differently—and why wasn't it?

The movie never asks those questions. The event is presented solely from the perspective of the security detail—the small group of men assigned to the American compound. This is not a Hollywood-ized version of the events like the other big movie out right now. (Revenant is based on a true event, but people and details have been added to enhance the drama.)

So 13 Hours just presents what happens at Benghazi without directly dealing with all the political questions and squabbling. Yet the movie made a strong political statement without ever making a direct political statement.

For example, the CIA in Benghazi stayed in continual contact with the state department and the Pentagon regarding the events as they happened. We see brief scenes of other military bases and military leaders in the Pentagon receiving the news and discussing the events, but they are very brief scenes. And no attempt was made to paint the Pentagon as the bad guys. Back in Benghazi, those on the phones just reported to the others, "Support is not coming." The dialogue in the compound included no opinions or reactions to that news. "WHY AREN'T THEY COMING? DOESN'T THE PRESIDENT CARE WE ARE UNDER ATTACK?"

But because we in the audience have been placed in the compound with the soldiers and CIA, we are the ones asking those questions.

During one of the brief scenes of the news being received at the Pentagon, Michael Bay included a cutaway shot of the White House. No dialogue—just the image. The movie made no attempt to put words in the President's mouth, but by simply showing the White House, Bay communicated the silence of the White House.

That is why I contend the producers made a strong political statement without making one. They didn't politicize what happened, but by simply showing events from the perspective of those in Benghazi, they let the viewers draw their own conclusions.

lynnhpryor.com
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7/10
Don't Pay Attention to the One-Star "Reviews"...
ram3973-375-13048716 February 2019
I first saw this film when it opened back in January, 2012. While it's not a "great" film by any stretch, it is a solidly good one. It is also Michael Bay's most *RESTRAINED* film (which isn't saying much, but it's a FAR cry better than the last four Transformers films).

But, getting to the title of my comment, when I went back and watched this film for the second time (today, February 16, 2019), I felt compelled to pull up IMDb on my phone during the viewing and I checked out some of the user reviews. I found one thing shockingly in common among all of the one-star "reviews":

Not a single one of them had any knowledge of the events of the true incident! And it was painfully obvious that they could not have been bothered to do a little research before making their inane comments public. Many did not know the name of the militant group that attacked the compound (Ansar al-Sharia), and just randomly decided that it must be ISIS. Some felt that it was a condemnation on Hillary Clinton and her actions/lack of actions as the events unfolded (there was not a single mention of Secretary Clinton throughout the entire film, good or bad). One did not even understand why the name of the film is "13 Hours" (seriously, did they even bother to actually WATCH the film before adding their "thoughts" in a blatant effort to only try to bring down the rating percentage?)!

Is the film accurate? Of course not. When a movie is based on a true event, dramatic license is and ALWAYS has been used to make the film more compelling to viewers. And say what you will about Michael Bay's films, but the guy can masterfully direct action set pieces; each one expertly realized to get the viewer's heart pumping. Here, he does it again and again. Or, more accurately, two straight hours after the first bullets start flying to the bitter end.

It's not a definitive history lesson on what actually happened, but it is decidedly riveting and Bay's most mature film to date. One can only hope that now he's left the directorial duties of the abyssmally and increasingly brainless "Transformers" franchise to other people, maybe we can start getting more films like this from him so people can remember what he is actually capable of when he gets material to work with that he takes seriously and treats it as such.
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10/10
Wonderful truthful retelling of Benghazi
debbie-willoughby21 July 2016
I feel compelled to review this and say what a wonderful and truthful retelling of the Benghazi battle this movie is. BIG props to Michael Bay and his team, especially having the real men as close consultants on the film. Well done the actors for a very realistic portrayal of these heroes. This film answered all my questions about Benghazi and has HUGE integrity. Was very violent- as were the real events but very realistically done. It was so shocking watching the attack on Ambassador Stevens and hearing him radioing for help- so hard to watch, his poor family :( This film should be shown in to every politician and every school kid around the world. Great film 10/10
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8/10
Movie critics love to hate
gmd4462-623-5292615 January 2016
13 Hours was absolutely riveting, no question. And it raises serious questions about the Benghazi attack, questions which have yet to be answered. But it's clear why critics are dissing it--it shows Americans as veritable superheroes in a country gone berserk. Also, the movie makes no bones of the fact that the whole "protest over an anti-Islamic video" explanation was totally bogus, and our country, protected by true blue men and women willing to give their lives, is run by a bunch of jackasses. I hope Hillary goes down for this. But three years later, no one has even been fired.

This movie doesn't answer any of those questions. But it is so emotionally involving I found myself with my fist in my mouth most of the time. Michael Bay may have his faults, but he knows how to move an audience--to laughter and to tears. There were moments that went a bit overboard—this is a Michael Bay movie, after all—but I am thankful it was him and not some anti-American, Oliver Stone-like director who made this movie. There are good guys and bad guys in the world, and Americans are the good guys. Especially in Benghazi.
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10/10
Wow
tvolm15 January 2016
Was not expecting much, honestly.

Incredible movie, excellent acting, fast paced, suspenseful.

Far better than The Reverant, more believable* and way more deserving of Oscars. (*hypothermia)

The insanity of what happened to those people, both Americans and Arabs was portrayed with compassion, humanity and leaves me wondering how this could have actually happened.

Overall, a great film, raising more questions than answers.

Reading more online about the events, and those after, makes it look like ugly politics.

Still the film instills a sense of patriotism, American heroism and reaffirms that America is the greatest nation, and people in history.
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10/10
American Heroes Save 31 Lives (inc their own)
topeka_brooks18 January 2016
Warning: Spoilers
13 Hours is not for the faint of heart. It is not for children or for those with a weak constitution. Blood and gore alone is not the issue. The violence is almost non-stop. Our heroes and the people they protect face certain horrific death if they fail. And in some cases they do.

The good guys slaughter their attackers at a pace that makes Total Recall pale in comparison. All of this is explicit, graphic, gory, and obscene. It's also totally appropriate. It is a war film after all.

Much has been made of the political implications of this film, but the film lacks any bias if one accepts the idea that American mercenaries have the right to defend the people they are supposed to protect.

Bay wisely choose not to insert any propaganda into the film. The only overt political message was the testimony of the American combatants. At the end of the film, one character sees a Libyan transport approaching, and he mutters something about 'no Americans.' If that doesn't say it all, I don't know what will.

Film critics have attacked the film, but frankly that's their bias showing. If these were anti-Americans doing the same thing to freaks, monsters, or genocidal maniacs, the critics would fawn over it.

Bay has outdone himself, and not only produced a great film, but he went beyond his own personal views to tell the story.
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9/10
Another Fantastic Modern War Film
kj57014016 January 2016
Following in the footsteps of other January Released Modern War Flicks based on books (Lone Survivor and American Sniper), 13 Hours is thoroughly entertaining if I dare say the funniest of these films. 13 Hours for the most part takes away the political cluster of the Benghazi incident and mainly focuses on the job at hand for the 6 "bodyguards" protecting a secret CIA outpost. Which makes this film the perfect vehicle for Michael Bay to direct as it focuses on the action of the incident primarily.

The film that I would make the greatest comparison to 13 Hours would naturally be Black Hawk Down (even referenced in this film), which to be honest is not a negative because Black Hawk Down is an amazing film. There are just a lot of similarities as these heroes have to protect themselves in a foreign land where it honestly seems like everyone is an enemy.

This film naturally is full of Michael Bay-isms and full disclosure I love most of Michael Bay films all full of machismo. 13 Hours has the super slow-mo, the pan over a field with children playing (Armageddon), the camera moving through objects (Bad Boys II), and the bomb dropping (Pearl Harbor). So take that a positive or negative in regards to how you feel about a Michael Bay film.

All the actors who play the 6 soldiers are amazing! Their interactions with each other is so natural and believable which helps feel for the characters when the chaos starts. The comedic relief soldier, Tanto, played by Pablo Schreiber was wonderful and helped break the tension in this very suspenseful and intense situation. "Fighting a war in shorts" cracked me up every time.

The MVP of this movie was James Badge Dale as Tyrone "Rone" Woods. He portrayed the leader of the group perfectly as a flawed man who just wants to do the right thing. He should be a bonafide A-Lister.

All in All this was a very good, entertaining movie that should be seen in theaters and I will probably by the Blu-Ray Steelbook when it comes out.
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10/10
Must see
cherylmackenzie24 January 2016
This is a movie that your government doesn't want you to see. Great acting, great action, and great explanation of what happened in Benghazi. Let's you understand why Benghazi is still in the news and why it should be!

Some of the paid movie critics--particularly those from liberal publications--are attempting to diss the movie. They are way off base. The movie doesn't get caught up in trying to send a message or politics. In fact, I don't believe that Obama's or Clinton's names are even mentioned in the move. The director has even said that he went out of his way to keep politics out of the movie. The movie just shows what happened in Benghazi--or rather, what didn't happen in Benghazi. What didn't happen, was that no air help was given to those under attack despite multiple calls for help. People died because nothing was done. Terrible!
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10/10
Everyone Will Love It Except Hillary
bnemec-929-47812516 January 2016
Seriously, no one can say that Michael Bay didn't go out of his way to avoid the politics on this film. The facts, however, speak for themselves. The movie is action-packed and kept my attention the entire time. Very few films do that. From D.C. things get political and the temptation is always present to reduce the consequences of bad decisions through cover-up and misinformation. The story is one of the decisions the real heroes must make in the heat of battle torn between leadership and just doing the right thing. I recommend anyone interested in what actually happened to see this movie but it should be a requirement for those who intend to vote.
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10/10
Finally, a recounting from the men who were there.
slazerus16 January 2016
The fact that this is a true story and a part of our reality and American history, you are completely drawn in unlike any movie of fiction. It's like a modern day Alamo, as our men must defend against hundreds of jihadists in a dangerous and fallen nation, while somehow the leadership in America leaves these Americans to die In one of the greatest acts of betrayal our nation has ever seen. The locations, action and people are incredibly authentic and well shot. A true story of bravery and betrayal that continues in our countries politics to this very day. Without a doubt one of the best and most important films of the year, an absolute must see!
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10/10
Surreal
russeljacobsen16 January 2016
A true movie some people in power do not want you to see, it shows how incompetent and disconnected the ruling class are at times. If ignorance is bliss, bliss is over rated I will take the truth no matter how disturbing. So as for how the movie looked it was awesome. The visual effects are stunning. Do not bring young children as it is extremely graphic in the violence, shootings and explosions. The acting of a couple of people was just OK but most will draw you in and connect with you. If you are a hard and fast supporter of certain political leaders do not go see this as you may have need to question your support. I left with mixed emotions of sadness, anger, disgust and proud to know that we have some real American hero's willing to give every thing for other Americans. People will say what they think really happened in Benghazi but the only ones who know are those who lived it. If anyone has a different account other than this one. Go make your own movie of "what really happened was", good luck with that.
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7/10
Patriotic and Sad
stevendbeard15 January 2016
Warning: Spoilers
I saw "13 Hours:The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi" starring, John Krasinski-Aloha, Leatherheads; James Badge Dale-The Walk, World War Z; Max Martini-Fifty Shades of Grey, The Unit_tv and Matt Letscher-Her, The Mack of Zorro.

This is based on a true story about a small group of military men fighting an Alamo type fight-a few men holding off big forces-in Benghazi, Libya on September 11th of 2012. They like that date-9/11-in that part of the world. It's directed by Michael Bay, who knows his way around an action movie-The Transformer movies, Bad Boys movies, Armageddon and The Rock, just to name a few he had a hand in. Matt plays the American ambassador to Libya that is stranded at the embassy when it is attacked. John, James and Max are GRS soldiers used as security for the C.I.A. that are stationed about a mile away. If you have never heard of the GRS-I know I haven't before this movie, it stands for Global Response Staff-they are the secret soldiers in the sub title of the movie. They are made up of special-ops guys from different branches of the military, such as SEALS, Army and Marines. From about 5:00 pm until around 6:00 am the next day-13 hours-the GRS helped save lives and fight off enemy soldiers until help could arrive. Not all survive but a lot more of the enemy bite the dust in truly heroic fashion. Some of the fighting is pretty graphic; I remember one of the GRS walking around after a fierce battle with his arm almost detached, just hanging by a few tendons and muscles. Most of the men have families back home and all they can think about is just getting back to their homes safely and seeing their loved ones again. I don't know about anyone else but it made me feel patriotic and thankful of the men & women who give their all for our country. It's rated "R" for violence, bloody images and language and has a running time of 2 hours & 24 minutes. I enjoyed it and would buy it on Blu-Ray.
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9/10
Makes the soldiers voice heard
skscarama18 January 2016
Too often in life the truth of a story is buried by political maneuvering that goes unchallenged by the media and we (the public) receive a story that may be very different from reality.

One could talk a lot about the different aspects of this film: the action, the politics, military tactics, etc...but in the end what I thought was most compelling was that the individual soldiers voices were heard (I'm using the term "soldier" as a catchall here...there were former Marines and Navy personnel involved as well the former Army guys). It's a rare thing for the guy on the ground to have this much weight given to his voice in order to tell what he saw, so I applaud the directors for giving that to them.

The story is told through their eyes. It is the story of what they actually experienced on the ground. Gone is the smoke and mirrors of politics that tries to cast everything in a favorable light that makes future election cycles look good. This is the raw experience straight from the mouths of the men who fought it.

The film doesn't seek to explain the "why", it only relays the "what". It's up the viewer to go forth and sort it all out. Why wasn't help sent? Why was the security situation so weak to begin with? Why was it reported so differently in America as opposed to how it actually happened?

The film did an admirable job of building up the tension even though we all know what happened. The tension was felt as those calls for help came, and it crescendos as the only 5 or 6 men in the world who can help are forced to sit and do nothing.

Any American fighting man who watches this will cringe...because these calls actually happened...and real Americans actually died...and if you've served this country in any capacity you will be angry sitting there and not being able to do anything.

The film does a very good job of telling not only the primary story of the attacks through the eyes of those who fought it, but does a remarkable job of delivering the personalities of those men, and the struggles their families faced as well. That's not an easy job.

I'm not very familiar with John Krasinski, I only know him from watching a season or two of The Office. However, he proves in this film that he can act. He did a great job.

Perhaps the only distracting thing was that they cast two actors from the TV series The Office to be in the film. The whole time I was thinking "isn't that other dude from The Office too?" So both Pam's husband, and his long time romantic rival from The Office are co-starring in this movie. It's a little strange to see Jim and Roy from The Office on a rooftop together...but not so strange that it takes away from the film. At no time did I expect Michael Scott to walk on screen.

In the end I guess the film has something for everyone. The guys will love the action, the girls get to cry, and everyone comes out with a better idea of what actually happened in Benghazi.

Go see it.
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7/10
It's no secret, I'm not a fan of a lot of director Michael Bay's latest works. However, '13 Hours' was not that bad. It was decent enough to watch.
ironhorse_iv13 December 2018
Warning: Spoilers
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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10/10
My opinion of this fantastic film.
BrothaJohnson15 January 2016
Absolutely loved it. This is my favorite movie and I have seen hundreds of films from all genres. This action-packed true story is very inspiring and leaves you on the edge of your seat. This movie even surprisingly has some comedy in it also. This is a very inspirational movie that is suspenseful funny and even very sad at some parts. This film is based on a very accurate true story and 2 out of 3 men who were the real soldiers said this film was highly accurate the last person said no only because of one minor detail that I will leave out of this review. However I recommend this impressive, stunning, and emotional block buster to everyone!! I hope my review made you all want to watch this. Everyone have a wonderful day, and stay safe out there to everyone.
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8/10
Close, but didn't go far enough
sijoe2215 January 2016
Warning: Spoilers
Sad, depressing true story of the brave men who needlessly were slaughtered in 2012.

For some reason, filmmaker ignored the fact that embassy REPEATEDLY and REPEATEDLY wanted more protection, but got NONE. Casually mentioned it ONCE, in a fleeting second, that's it.

Also, seemed to downplay the fact that the person ( a MAN, in real life, a WOMAN in Hollywood's PC environment) who ordered the "stand down" and refused to send help, completely DENIES that stand down was ordered, at end of movie, almost as an afterthought. This should have been made a HUGE part of the movie. It was not, unfortunately.

Also, the Clinton/Rice/Obama non-existent "video" fairy tale cover-up was nowhere to be found, and I found that horribly disappointing, and unexcusable.
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