Argo won Best Picture at the 85th Academy Awards for good reason: It is the best thriller I have seen in my twenty years of life. I watched this movie with my aunt on our flight from London to Vancouver in May, and the entire time felt like an adrenaline rush. Ben Affleck managed to take a true story that most everyone knows the ending to and turns it into a movie you’re on the edge of your seat for the whole film through.




Argo is about six Americans in Iran who cannot leave the country without being taken in by the army. Tony Mendez (Ben Affleck) is the CIA agent who takes it upon himself to get the Americans out, despite his idea being disapproved by the CIA. His lavish idea is to make a fake Hollywood movie, go to Iran pretending to be looking for shooting locations, meet up with the Americans and give them fake jobs on the fake movie, and fool everyone he and his group encounter in the meantime. Although this idea sounds incredibly far-fetched, Mendez expects the Iranian army to see through his co-workers simplistic ideas of “journalists in Iran” and “teachers in Iran.”


From the opening scene, to the discussion of the hostages, to the escape plans, Argo hits all the right notes to evoke immense suspense from viewers. It is a challenge to get through each scene (especially the ones that take place in Iran,) worrying over how the events are unfolding. Ben Affleck directs the movie brilliantly, letting scenes run their course without seeming anything close to lengthy, but still allotting enough time for the fear in the audience build to its boiling point.




One controversy surrounding the movie is the credit Canadians are given (my aunt also made this point to me.) Argo is based on a true story, and some things are changed around — as would be expected in a movie – but as a Canadian myself, I feel like Argo did give a satisfying amount of credit to Canadians. The end of the movie spoke of the Canadian-American alliance very positively for some minutes. The movie also had Canadians helping out the CIA in several ways. Outside of the movie itself, Ben Affleck thanked Canada for the Oscar win. You’re welcome, Ben Affleck.


When the movie ended, I turned to my aunt and said, “I think I just lost five years of my life stressing over this movie.” The sad thing is I’ve already seen the movie twice since then. Even with those fifteen years of my life gone due to the anxiety this film bestows on me, at least it’s making the remaining part of my life a great time. If you like movies that give you a thrill, Argo is the film you need in your collection.


Buy it. 100. –