Affleck performs well in 'Argo'
Published: Monday, October 15, 2012
Updated: Monday, October 15, 2012 23:10
It seems like not that long ago that the general consensus was that Ben Affleck was not really much of a talented actor. Then he wrote “Good Will Hunting” with Matt Damon. After that, I thought okay, this guy can write and his acting is okay, but he’s nothing special. Then, he did “Jersey Girl” and I thought okay, he’s a decent actor and the guy kind of grew on me. I saw “Gone Baby Gone” and thought okay, Affleck is a good director. Finally, I saw “The Town” and my jaw dropped to the ground so hard it took me five minutes after the credits started rolling to pick it back up off the theater floor. Needless to say I had high hopes for “Argo,” and it delivered.
Ben Affleck is probably not looking at any best actor nominations anytime soon in his career, but he is one hell of a director. Like “The Town” and “Gone Baby Gone,” “Argo” is so well directed and put together that you just can’t not like it. “Argo” features an ensemble cast of Affleck, Bryan Cranston, Alan Arkin and John Goodman. While I will admit I was slightly disappointed that none of the actors were really around long enough to truly shine, they definitely got the job done and then some. Bryan Cranston toward the end has his moments and reminds us why we all secretly love Walter White on “Breaking Bad.” Goodman and Arkin have great chemistry together as the two film producers and are pretty funny at times. The best lines were spoiled in the commercials, but you have got to give the guys their credit. The movie is primarily centered around Affleck’s character. While it never goes too far into his character’s depth, it doesn’t really have to. His personal life and feelings aren’t as important as his actions throughout the film, and Affleck is good enough to get this job done and charm us with his charisma throughout it.
It’s ironic that this film is released now, seeing as the opening scene of the attack on the U.S. Embassy in Iran is pretty similar to what happened a month ago in Libya. Nonetheless, the film shows us the unbiased truth of what happened that day and what happened over there as a result. You’ve probably never heard this story of the secret U.S. mission to Iran disguised as a film crew to sneak hostages out of the country. That’s because it was classified until the late ‘90s and from what I’ve read online, it seems the story is pretty close to accurate. It may lack the action and thrills of shootouts and chases that made “The Town” one of the greatest crime films ever made, but it delivers the same thrills in another way. Towards the end, you’re on the edge of your seat wondering whether or not you’re going to get your happy ending and if these hostages will be saved. Do yourself a favor, and don’t look up the true story beforehand. You want the suspense and Affleck surely delivers it with one hell of a climax. “Argo” is one of the best films this year. It’s probably not going to win best picture, but you can count on a nomination and maybe a best director nomination for Affleck. “Argo” is one story you just have to see to believe, and it has that feeling of authentic CIA realism that you just don’t feel in a film like “Taken 2.” Don’t miss out on this one.