Argo

User Score
7.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 900 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 64 out of 900

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User Reviews

  1. Jun 8, 2016
    9
    Argo makes lasting events look real even though everything in the movie was all part of the act. No wonder I can't even manage to get past through the scenes in Argo without having common sense.
  2. Dec 22, 2012
    8
    Fantastic movie. Ben Affleck is awesome in the lead role and while this was obviously not 110% historically accurate, it was still great look at one of the most contentious issues in US history.
  3. Oct 24, 2012
    8
    In 1979, when Iranians stormed our embassy and took 52 people hostage, 6 Americans escaped to the Canadian Ambassador's residence. After months, CIA agent Ben Affleck devised a plan to sneak them out of the country: pretending to be a crew scouting a new film. This historically-based story is told thru involving scenarios, some humor and a quietly tense escape. The characters are uniformlyIn 1979, when Iranians stormed our embassy and took 52 people hostage, 6 Americans escaped to the Canadian Ambassador's residence. After months, CIA agent Ben Affleck devised a plan to sneak them out of the country: pretending to be a crew scouting a new film. This historically-based story is told thru involving scenarios, some humor and a quietly tense escape. The characters are uniformly bland, but the hair and wardrobe were right-on 70s. While this is not a riveting or fast-paced espionage adventure, it is a low-key, well-crafted and fulfilling experience. NOTE: Be sure to sit thru the early credits to see a wonderful montage of photos that inspired the movie. Expand
  4. Sep 1, 2014
    8
    Affleck has directed and crafted one of the best films of not only this year, but of his entire career. This film manages to take a true story and turn it into a masterpiece.
  5. Nov 28, 2012
    9
    Featuring a slew of brilliant performances and one of the most nail-biting climaxes I've witnessed in quite a while, "Argo" proves to be a brilliantly written and superbly directed thriller/drama.
  6. Jan 3, 2013
    9
    Argo is one hell of a movie. It is tense, thrilling and sensational. Ben Affleck has put together a film that has hardly any flaws and a film that is gripping and captivating. A truly great American story.
  7. Mar 10, 2013
    9
    Wow who could believe that Ben Affleck would become this good of a director. Argo is his best work to date and lined with a great cast including Affleck himself, this film has some very suspenseful moments.
  8. Aug 24, 2014
    8
    Argo is the Academy Award Winner for Best Picture of 2012, and while it was an amazing film, the actual story was far less interesting. In 1980, the tensions between Iran and The United States began, and the U.S. embassy in Tehran was overrun. Hundreds were held hostage for over a year, but six did manage to escape and went into hiding. Knowing that their lives were even more in dangerArgo is the Academy Award Winner for Best Picture of 2012, and while it was an amazing film, the actual story was far less interesting. In 1980, the tensions between Iran and The United States began, and the U.S. embassy in Tehran was overrun. Hundreds were held hostage for over a year, but six did manage to escape and went into hiding. Knowing that their lives were even more in danger than those of the hostages, the C.I.A. developed a unique plan to get them out of Iran. They sent in one of their top agents, with credentials claiming that he was part of a Canadian film crew. Armed with fake documents, he would smuggled the six out of the country. The film was intense and featured one close call after another, but in reality, getting them out was almost too easy. They were never stopped or questioned, and slipped out under the cover of early morning, without a hitch, but what kind of a movie would that be? Once these classified files were released by the U.S. Government, Hollywood saw the chance to tell this story in an extreme manor, and did so much to the delight of audiences and much to the chagrin of the other countries involved. Ben Affleck both stars and directs this film, and while everyone raves about his performance, I thought it was typically cold and flat. Ben Affleck wasn't interesting, the character he played was. Affleck wasn't any more likeable or skillful here than he was in any other role and that's why he didn't win best actor. I've said it before and I'll say it again, the man is a fantastic Director, but a very mediocre actor. That being said, the extreme locations and huge cast, were his biggest challenge to date as a Director, and I was very impressed by the way he managed to pull it off. Argo is based on a true story, it's fast paced, and even though we all know what happened before seeing the film, it's still an edge of your seat thriller that really shouldn't be missed. Expand
  9. Nov 5, 2012
    9
    Affleck proves here that he's a top notch director. The crew of Argo never made a mistake; the story is represented here as best as its going to be anywhere. Alan Arkin and John Goodman are both terrific in their supporting roles.
  10. Jan 9, 2013
    8
    Alan Arkin stole the show in this movie, but all of the supporting cast delivered authentic heartfelt performances. It was suspenseful and smoothly paced. One of the better films I have seen recently.
  11. Oct 14, 2012
    9
    I'm sure it was difficult to weave an element of comedy in with the dramatic and the thriller aspects, but Affleck does it well. The movie is not as dramatic or as impactful as The Town, but for a movie based on true events, with its limiting nature, it's one of the best I've seen. They effectively establish 1980 Iran as a truly horrific place, and by doing this, the escape sequence madeI'm sure it was difficult to weave an element of comedy in with the dramatic and the thriller aspects, but Affleck does it well. The movie is not as dramatic or as impactful as The Town, but for a movie based on true events, with its limiting nature, it's one of the best I've seen. They effectively establish 1980 Iran as a truly horrific place, and by doing this, the escape sequence made me feel as if my heart were going to beat out of my chest. For a movie like this, that's a good sign. Goodman and Aarkin are outstanding. As a side note, I wish the trailer had been a bit less comprehensive because most of the best and funniest lines I'd seen before. This is obviously true of many movies - you have to sell the darned thing - but it was glaring here. "If I"m going to make a fake movie, I'm going to make a fake hit!" Yes, it's funny, but I'd seen it 10 times before going in. Finally, the fact that this movie was released within weeks of the Libyan embassy murders made the opening sequence all the more chilling. I don't mean to suggest the movie was better because of the timing visa vis the deaths of civil servants, but it made the film even more relevant. Bottom line: it's not high art, but it's very entertaining. Expand
  12. Mar 23, 2013
    6
    argo is an overall good film. I feel that a few scenes fell flat and many supporting characters were unnecessary because they had such small roles, but the overall film has plenty of nail-biting moments and phenomonal acting.
  13. Dec 9, 2012
    10
    Wonderfully directed and acted very subtly by Ben affleck, this film was a total surprise. Full of both tension and humour, the two complimented each other to sublime effect. The best film of 2012.
  14. Jun 27, 2016
    9
    " Argo " was a film that had an impressive thematic although I felt very slow film , Ben Affleck or say " Benji " as an actor to his inicos are disastrous but gradually gained ground , and as a director is one of the best who brought movies very good caliber , and " Argo " is no exception.
  15. Aug 23, 2013
    7
    The idea is profoundly astonishing, and the reality that these events were reality, were even more astonishing. It's only downfall, unfortunately, is its bias towards the Americans. In general, I admire Ben Affleck as a director and producer, as well as John Goodman and Alan Arkin for the laughs they bring into the movie. The fake suspension makes the movie less banal, and for that IThe idea is profoundly astonishing, and the reality that these events were reality, were even more astonishing. It's only downfall, unfortunately, is its bias towards the Americans. In general, I admire Ben Affleck as a director and producer, as well as John Goodman and Alan Arkin for the laughs they bring into the movie. The fake suspension makes the movie less banal, and for that I contemplate whether I like or hate it. Expand
  16. Mar 29, 2013
    7
    If I were to criticize the film I’d have to say is that it was overrated. It was good but it was not that good. I quite honestly was not invested the whole time only at certain parts. Maybe this is not my kind of film. Maybe I’m just not used to the style. I don’t know for whatever reason the movie did not suck me in the way it did lots of critics. Frequently in the film I was bored. IIf I were to criticize the film I’d have to say is that it was overrated. It was good but it was not that good. I quite honestly was not invested the whole time only at certain parts. Maybe this is not my kind of film. Maybe I’m just not used to the style. I don’t know for whatever reason the movie did not suck me in the way it did lots of critics. Frequently in the film I was bored. I don’t know if the characters and story were not interesting, if it was the amount of dialogue; but for whatever reason I just thought it was good. Maybe if the film took more liberties from the actual event by creating false events to create more tension and excitement, the actors gave stronger performances, and the script a little tighter I would have really enjoyed this film; but as it is the film is just good. Way too overrated by critics if you ask me. Expand
  17. Apr 2, 2013
    8
    Argo is tense and exciting with well written characters. The recognizable names help push it to greater heights. I give this film 83%.
  18. May 8, 2013
    10
    Argo makes all the right moves and deviates greatly from what is expected from such a serious situation as the the Iranian hostage crisis.
    Ben Affleck continues his commanding streak as director and lead actor, he takes on a film based on a true story, and what a story it is. Affleck plays Tony Mendez, a CIA operative whose speciality is exfiltration, and when he is brought in to the fold
    Argo makes all the right moves and deviates greatly from what is expected from such a serious situation as the the Iranian hostage crisis.
    Ben Affleck continues his commanding streak as director and lead actor, he takes on a film based on a true story, and what a story it is. Affleck plays Tony Mendez, a CIA operative whose speciality is exfiltration, and when he is brought in to the fold after six embassy workers in Iran escape, he must devise a plan to safely rescue them from Iranian rule. This plan has of course went down in history, whether for its riskiness, stupidity or genius is anyone's guess.
    Mendez himself carries out the task, an elaborate plan is set in motion where he, and the six people he plans to rescue, are a film crew who are location scouting in Iran, they all have fake identities and Argo proves that everything is about detail, a fake script, storyboard, marketing tools and even press involvement for a film that will never actually exist, simply for the fact that getting in is not the problem, but getting out is a whole different story.
    There are plenty of colourful characters that light up this wonderful thriller, Alan Arkin, John Goodman and Bryan Cranston join Affleck in creating a very nostalgic and peak into the world of 1970s operations. Arkins portrayal of Lester Siegel is brilliant and one of the highlights of the film, while Affleck perfectly captures the dad in Mendez, who just wants to be with his family. Of course the the real winning formula of the film is the ludicrous idea of the fake movie to get in and out of Iran, and Argo (which is also what the fake film is called) manages to give a realistic and nerve-wracking account of just how difficult and frightening it was to be an American with the the boundaries of Iran, something we are shown as the credits role, when various screens from the film are put against the real images taken all those years ago.
    Diretor Affleck continues to surpass all expectations and is truly solidifying himself as one of the most talented and sought after directors in our generation, is ability to to take various pivotal moments within a character and create a rousing and entertaining story are becoming unmatched, he has taken a very serious crisis and managed to create a often humorous yet thrilling affair, with a final act that will definitely leave you at the edge of your seat, time is indeed of the essence.
    If any film deserved Oscar recognition, it was Argo, its taste for nostalgia while taking on a subject that only became declassified almost 20 years after the crisis. It is a true blend of genres that has created a winning film through and through.
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  19. Mar 2, 2013
    8
    Argo was a very good film but Picture of the Year it was not. Sorry Academy but you got it wrong once again. Don't mistake this for bashing. Like I said, Argo was a very good film. Ben Affleck has proven once again that he's not only a fantastic and underrated actor but that he's becoming one of the better directors in Hollywood. Argo had great pacing for the type of movie it is, the plotArgo was a very good film but Picture of the Year it was not. Sorry Academy but you got it wrong once again. Don't mistake this for bashing. Like I said, Argo was a very good film. Ben Affleck has proven once again that he's not only a fantastic and underrated actor but that he's becoming one of the better directors in Hollywood. Argo had great pacing for the type of movie it is, the plot developed perfectly, the characters all felt real and authentic, etc. The only negative I would really have is that some of the suspense felt cheap and forced. Sure, they truly did escape Iran. That part is a true story. However, how close they were to getting caught is not necessarily known. So the fact that the final 30 minutes of the movie was close call after close call and that these scrapes didn't develop authentically but felt manufactured was not ideal. Nonetheless, I'd say this is a really good movie that, while it's a little overrated and overhyped (it won Picture of the Year when I'm not even sure it's the best true story CIA film of the year that would probably be Zero Dark Thirty), most people would still enjoy. "Argo f*** yourself!" Expand
  20. Oct 12, 2012
    8
    Thirty-five of the last 40 minutes of the film
  21. Oct 29, 2012
    8
    Argo starts interesting and gets better as it goes along. A couple of things were confusing to me, however. The Iranians were holding 52 Americans hostage. Why was it so important to them to see if any had escaped during the takeover? Why couldn't they simply get that information from the Americans they were holding hostage instead of having to piece together shredded documents? IArgo starts interesting and gets better as it goes along. A couple of things were confusing to me, however. The Iranians were holding 52 Americans hostage. Why was it so important to them to see if any had escaped during the takeover? Why couldn't they simply get that information from the Americans they were holding hostage instead of having to piece together shredded documents? I also couldn't quite figure out why we had to know that Ben Affleck had a son from a prior marriage - that part seemed tacked on and was never relevant. Lastly, when the group entered the airport they all had a scared "deer in the headlights" look. If they were pretending to be filmmakers why weren't they all coached to talk to each other like people normally would? The final chase scene on the tarmac is over the top Hollywood for sure but exciting nonetheless. Overall a good film with some flaws. Expand
  22. Dec 29, 2012
    9
    Ben Affleck has proved for a third time that he can direct. After the low key drama 'Gone Baby Gone' and the powerful thriller 'The Town', he comes with this well crafted piece, which is politically charged, has quickening pace and good dose of humor but above all filled with nerve-racking suspense. And like Clooney's (the other actor turned into one notable director) middle easternBen Affleck has proved for a third time that he can direct. After the low key drama 'Gone Baby Gone' and the powerful thriller 'The Town', he comes with this well crafted piece, which is politically charged, has quickening pace and good dose of humor but above all filled with nerve-racking suspense. And like Clooney's (the other actor turned into one notable director) middle eastern political thriller 'Syriana', 'Argo' is Ben's best film yet. Expand
  23. Dec 19, 2014
    8
    Smart, tense and well directed, "Argo" succeeds not just as a great movie but as a realistic political thriller that keeps audience entertained for 2 hours.
  24. Mar 24, 2013
    10
    Argo is magnificently brilliant in every way. It's perfect in terms of espeonauge and story telling (even though it's based on a true story). Not only was there great acting, but director, Ben Affleck, reels in some great acting as well. But overall, Affleck has given us an incredible experience of how far one man will go to save the lives of others.
  25. Jan 14, 2016
    8
    It’s a highly entertaining movie. An awesome thriller film.

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  26. Mar 8, 2014
    9
    The buildup was a bit slow, but once it gets going, it's just awesome. It's thrilling, suspenseful, and well-directed. I mean, just think about the dialogue and the acting, and this movie really stands out.
  27. Dec 14, 2013
    8
    Argo balances suspense with fun and entertainment very well despite its slow pace. Although it falls short on expectations, it's old-school feel and tension escalates it from falling flat.
  28. Dec 22, 2014
    9
    Argo is the film that made me think why are people worried that Ben Affleck is playing batman because this film is beyond brilliant. i loved every second of it's amazing true plot, great acting from a all star cast ( special mention to john goodman, Alan Arkin, Bryan Cranston and Scoot McNairy) and one of the most suspenseful endings i've seen. for once my pick for best picture at theArgo is the film that made me think why are people worried that Ben Affleck is playing batman because this film is beyond brilliant. i loved every second of it's amazing true plot, great acting from a all star cast ( special mention to john goodman, Alan Arkin, Bryan Cranston and Scoot McNairy) and one of the most suspenseful endings i've seen. for once my pick for best picture at the oscars has actually won Expand
  29. Nov 9, 2014
    8
    Argo balances suspense with fun and entertainment very well despite its slow pace. Although it falls short of Oscar winning expectations, it's old-school feel and tension escalates it from falling flat.
Metascore
86

Universal acclaim - based on 45 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 41 out of 45
  2. Negative: 0 out of 45
  1. Reviewed by: Dan Jolin
    Nov 5, 2012
    80
    An old-school espionage thriller with a movie-biz comedy twist, all the better for being (almost) entirely true. It is to Ben Affleck's credit that the tension and laughs complement rather than neutralise each other.
  2. Reviewed by: Richard Jordan
    Oct 17, 2012
    80
    Combining laughs and thrills with plenty of verve, Ben Affleck continues his smart directorial career with a stylish, gripping hostage drama.
  3. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    Oct 12, 2012
    70
    Argo isn't quite on the level of the Sidney Lumet classics to which Affleck pays stylistic homage - smart and taut as it is, it lacks the broader political vision of a film like "Dog Day Afternoon." But Lumet lite still goes down pretty smooth.