The movie was fake, the mission was real.

Ben Affleck directs and stars in this Academy Award-winning thriller, the true story of a plan hatched by the CIA to rescue six U.S. diplomats from Iran in 1979. To do so, the Agency teams up with a Hollywood producer to fake a sci-fi movie production, using a location shoot as the pretext to get its people out.... More

When the U.S. Embassy in Iran is stormed by Islamic students and militants, six embassy staff escape in the confusion. The U.S. Government desperately seeks to get them out of the country before they are found and executed as spies - enter exfiltration specialist Antonio Mendez (Affleck). Mendez goes to Hollywood and works with a make-up artist (John Goodman) and producer (Alan Arkin) to fake the production of a sci-fi film, something that can explain Westerners moving in and out of the country. Then it's off to Tehran, for a rescue mission right under the noses of the new hardcore Islamic regime.Hide

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Flicks Review

With Argo, Ben Affleck-the-Director continues his admirable streak of making us forget Ben Affleck-the-Actor who for a period starred in embarrassing career-killing dreck like Surviving Christmas, Gigli and Daredevil. Extending his reach far beyond the Boston crime milieu of his first two films, Gone Baby Gone and The Town, Affleck demonstrates more of his proficient directorial chops in dramatising the Iran hostage crisis of 1979 where 52 Americans were held hostage by Islamic militants in the US Embassy in Tehran. 6 diplomats managed to escape the siege, and their rescue - a seemingly crackpot plan devised by CIA “ex-fil” agent Tony Mendez (a fine, understated Affleck) to disguise them as a Canadian film crew scouting exotic locations for a fake sci-fi movie - gives Argo its stranger-than-fiction appeal.... More

Toggling between severe political turmoil of the Middle East and the tawdry world of Hollywood make-believe is a dicey tonal balancing act, but Affleck has turned in a superbly acted, effortlessly entertaining brew of ‘70s-style political thriller, film-within-a-film satire and caper hijinks. Though the film never quite achieves the gutsy, dizzying horror of the first reel - where the rebels storm the Embassy - it does maintain a nerve-wracking ticking-bomb momentum, even if there’s no doubt in our minds that it’ll head for a comfy, optimistic conclusion. One could chastise Affleck for making a movie that too neatly condenses a messy event, but that doesn’t stop Argo from being a film worthy of its incredible hook: engaging, thoughtful, completely gripping.Hide

The Peoples' Reviews

Average ratings from 9 ratings, 10 reviews
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BY Zamm superstar

- except that I really enjoyed it!
Great story - having been inspired by real events. Great acting (less is more) and directing by Ben Affleck.

BY Red superstar

This is entertaining, and well worth a watch. I don't understand the Oscar or ALL the love its gotten though. The main storyline is riveting, shame about the shoehorned sentimentality at the end.

BY JR lister

Really Enjoyed this film. I thought that it had an excellent discussion of the politics of the late 1970's and early 80's. Although the last sequence definitely feels very "Hollywoodifed" it still stands as one of the best films of the year (so far) and also Ben Affleck's best film to date.

Although if I were to have one criticism it would be that the performance of Ben Affleck was a bit boring throughout the film and would of probably been a better choice if he sticked behind the... More camera.

Still an excellent film and a must see.Hide

BY filmlover superstar

Clever old Ben Affleck! A story worth telling about an event that was declassified by the U.S. Government in the 90's, and I imagine few of us knew about it. Some of the characters are believable others not so much but the final sequence is so stressful it makes for cinema magic.
The soundtrack is schmaltzy (except when we are listening to the pop of the day) which is mildly irritating but overall, good job Ben!

BY TJH grader

Really enjoyed this, good representation of the times. I don't like American block busters and finally a good independent feeling movie without subtitles. So if you like alternative and your movie buddy can't cope with subtitles this is great.

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The Press Reviews

96% of critics recommend.
Rotten Tomatoes Score. More reviews on Rotten Tomatoes

  • Argo the real movie about the fake movie, is both spellbinding and surprisingly funny. Full Review

  • There's a degree of puffery in the writing, however, that makes this drama untrustworthy. Full Review

  • No performances stand out, which is a shame given Affleck's track record with actors. Ultimately, it comes down to a chase to the airport, with a scary Revolutionary Guardsman at the gate. Full Review

  • Combining laughs and thrills with plenty of verve, Ben Affleck continues his smart directorial career with a stylish, gripping hostage drama. Full Review

  • Ultimately, the thrill of Argo is in watching how the illusion-making of movies found such an unlikely application on the world political stage, where the stakes were literally life and death. Full Review

  • Argo is a crackerjack political thriller told with intelligence, great period detail and a surprising amount of nutty humor for a serious look at the Iran hostage crisis of 1979-81. Full Review

  • Affleck easily orchestrates this complex film with 120 speaking parts as it moves from inside-the-Beltway espionage thriller to inside Hollywood dark comedy to gripping international hostage drama, all without missing a step. Full Review

  • In the end, this is a story about outwitting rather than killing the enemy, making it a homage to actual intelligence and an example of the same. Full Review

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