User Score
7.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 812 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 58 out of 812

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  1. Feb 18, 2013
    8
    Argo is a great story that sells itself on the fact that it is an insane, but true story. It's a good movie, but it really isn't great in any capacity. The performances were on, but afflec's distance felt forced. The story was interesting, but very predictable, and very Hollywood (I guess that might be part of the point, so we'll let that pass). There wasn't anything bad in Argo, in fact,Argo is a great story that sells itself on the fact that it is an insane, but true story. It's a good movie, but it really isn't great in any capacity. The performances were on, but afflec's distance felt forced. The story was interesting, but very predictable, and very Hollywood (I guess that might be part of the point, so we'll let that pass). There wasn't anything bad in Argo, in fact, you could say it was flawless. However, I don't feel it did justice to the historical situation, and that something was indeed missing. In a year that didn't include Zero Dark Thirty, I might not be looking for that extra something, but I digress. Expand
  2. Feb 18, 2013
    0
    After all the talk, I thought well maybe Ben Affleck did something good after all, but I was sceptical. I was right. This movie is just one big orgy of tough man tough talk, which really gets annoying after 20 minutes or so. There is completely no character development in any of the hostages. I had a hard time not falling asleep. What an incredible bore.
  3. Feb 11, 2013
    0
    A one-sided self-satisfying nationalist and political propaganda film with no real suspense and substance. With highly-implausible inventions to reality that make it look stupid to the audience with some common sense and minimum level knowledge of the situation. The silly car chase on the airport runway or the lack of explanation for why the airliner is not turned back to the airport byA one-sided self-satisfying nationalist and political propaganda film with no real suspense and substance. With highly-implausible inventions to reality that make it look stupid to the audience with some common sense and minimum level knowledge of the situation. The silly car chase on the airport runway or the lack of explanation for why the airliner is not turned back to the airport by the control tower, or the American women wandering provocatively (taking photos) among the Muslim Persians with no head-covering (the stupidest thing of all), etc. Expand
  4. Feb 8, 2013
    6
    The movie had excellent visuals and period feel. The acting was good too. I also liked the subject matter. But the pace was slow, so the movie became a drag at times. Something was off the entire time. I cannot bring myself to watch it again. There are other movies with serious tone and longer running time like The Pianist and Shawshank Redemption that manage to pull it off and are highlyThe movie had excellent visuals and period feel. The acting was good too. I also liked the subject matter. But the pace was slow, so the movie became a drag at times. Something was off the entire time. I cannot bring myself to watch it again. There are other movies with serious tone and longer running time like The Pianist and Shawshank Redemption that manage to pull it off and are highly entertaining. Argo definitely doesn't deserve the highest prize at the Oscars. Expand
  5. Feb 6, 2013
    10
    Excellent, understated film. Not that realistic, and as over-simplified as any true story has to be, but the detail and drama are really well done, and the acting is perfectly understated (apart from Arkin, who is just good fun). I don't follow the criticism that the film is pro-US propaganda. It unflinchingly (and accurately) lays the balme for many of Iran's woes at US foreignExcellent, understated film. Not that realistic, and as over-simplified as any true story has to be, but the detail and drama are really well done, and the acting is perfectly understated (apart from Arkin, who is just good fun). I don't follow the criticism that the film is pro-US propaganda. It unflinchingly (and accurately) lays the balme for many of Iran's woes at US foreign policy's door, where they belong. And then tells a cracking, terrific story. Expand
  6. Feb 2, 2013
    7
    It's an interesting movie and well directed. It gives you some insight as to what happened. Though I would have liked some scenes on the other embassy employees that were held hostage. The best part for me was seeing the old Swissair 747 take off.... (But that's just because I'm Swiss)........... Btw, that 747 was named Argovia (after the Kanton/State Aargau) Argo is the short version.
  7. Jan 29, 2013
    7
    Argo is a spectacular movie full of tension, drama and tricks. First, we notice that the story is very original, not only because of the invasion to the US embassy in Teheran, from where six people escaped, but also because of the idea that the CIA has to take them out of Iran, make a fake movie so this people act like the film crew. Second, everything becomes more interesting when we seeArgo is a spectacular movie full of tension, drama and tricks. First, we notice that the story is very original, not only because of the invasion to the US embassy in Teheran, from where six people escaped, but also because of the idea that the CIA has to take them out of Iran, make a fake movie so this people act like the film crew. Second, everything becomes more interesting when we see that the film is based on true events. Third, is amazing the levels of tension that reach this picture, every detail fits perfectly in the puzzle that created Ben Affleck to reveal the outcome. Fourth, there are some great scenes that show the contemporary modus operandi and mentality of the American people; like at the invasion of the embassy, the workers must destroy all the confidential documents instead of run away; another one is in the first reunion of the CIA when is noticeable that this men do not know or care of knowing about other cultures than their own; and the last one is when then protagonist goes to Hollywood and discovers that no one actually works there. Fifth, its surprising the idea of the story inside a story, because the ending of the plot in the fake film is the same that the one in the real picture. Finally this is one of those pictures were the whole cast perform good, highlighting Tony Mendez, the six that escaped and the maid of the ambassador. With an excellent direction this is definitely an outstanding film. Argo **** yourself. Expand
  8. Jan 27, 2013
    7
    great film! not sure I understand the hype? good storyline and screen play, but nothing extra special? ben Affleck is obviously talented as a director, writer and actor. but for me it falls short of any other critically acclaimed film this year? Alan Arkin is superb and partnered with John Goodman they make a humours, realistic depiction of their characters. A great film, and a must see ifgreat film! not sure I understand the hype? good storyline and screen play, but nothing extra special? ben Affleck is obviously talented as a director, writer and actor. but for me it falls short of any other critically acclaimed film this year? Alan Arkin is superb and partnered with John Goodman they make a humours, realistic depiction of their characters. A great film, and a must see if you like a tense drama... but isn't the best film of the year? its barely memorable! Expand
  9. Jan 26, 2013
    8
    I would have liked this movie a lot better if it weren't so fast and loose with the facts. For starters, the ending is complete Hollywood b.s. In real life the hostages didn't have any trouble boarding their flight and there was no chase down the tarmac. But hey, the change made for a more suspenseful ending which. let's face it, sells more tickets. Most offensive, though, was the lack ofI would have liked this movie a lot better if it weren't so fast and loose with the facts. For starters, the ending is complete Hollywood b.s. In real life the hostages didn't have any trouble boarding their flight and there was no chase down the tarmac. But hey, the change made for a more suspenseful ending which. let's face it, sells more tickets. Most offensive, though, was the lack of credit the film gives the Canadians for the role they played in getting the American hostages free. Leave it to the Americans to beat their chests and take all the credit for themselves while portraying the Canadians are mere "innkeepers". Expand
  10. Jan 25, 2013
    9
    This movie was excellent, had me sweating at the beginning and end. Affleck managed to tell an important scene in history while also providing an entertaining and witty screenplay along with great acting. I'm really hoping Argo will get an Oscar. And to those who disliked the movie "Argo **** yourself!"
  11. Jan 25, 2013
    8
    If you ever grind drama, suspense and a hint of comedy together you would definitely get a fully baked
  12. Jan 24, 2013
    8
    When Ben Affleck released his first film as director, Gone Baby Gone, most were expecting it to be a flop, because as history tells us, not many successful actors can just switch gears and become very successful directors. Well, Ben has managed to do both, very successfully, I might add. The Town was such a hit, Ben knew that he had to find something and work extremely hard for his nextWhen Ben Affleck released his first film as director, Gone Baby Gone, most were expecting it to be a flop, because as history tells us, not many successful actors can just switch gears and become very successful directors. Well, Ben has managed to do both, very successfully, I might add. The Town was such a hit, Ben knew that he had to find something and work extremely hard for his next film. And he struck GOLD with Argo. With the history lesson at the beginning, you knew that Ben wanted the audience to grasp on to the full story and not just nose dive in without any backstory on why this was what it was. The tension and the thrill of it all really made for an excellent movie. I felt that the movie progressed too fast and most certainly could have been longer, but regardless this was still a great movie. With all the nominations in the category of Best Picture, it certainly wouldn't be a shock if Argo walked away with this Oscar. And it most certainly is a crime that Ben Affleck didn't get an Oscar nomination for Best Director. Expand
  13. Jan 24, 2013
    10
    Argo is a brilliant and tense thriller directed by Ben Affleck, and has proven to me that after three films, Affleck may be one of the most talented directors in the current age of Hollywood. Ben Affleck has had a bumpy career with his acting, I mean he has sucked (
  14. Jan 21, 2013
    9
    I am not a huge Ben Affleck fan, Reindeer Games, Daredevil, Gigli, really. I decided to watch this movie after seeing Ben Affleck's movie win a Golden Globe. Boy was I surprised! Very good movie! It doesn't matter if you are familiar with that time in our history or not. The story being told will pull you in, and have you thinking can this guy pull this off? Surprisingly, I enjoyed all ofI am not a huge Ben Affleck fan, Reindeer Games, Daredevil, Gigli, really. I decided to watch this movie after seeing Ben Affleck's movie win a Golden Globe. Boy was I surprised! Very good movie! It doesn't matter if you are familiar with that time in our history or not. The story being told will pull you in, and have you thinking can this guy pull this off? Surprisingly, I enjoyed all of the performances by these fine actors. I will go out in a limb to say, Mr. Affleck probably put a lot at stake in making this movie. Well played Mr. Affleck! Having George Clooney along for the ride was very smart too. Go see this movie. Collapse Expand
  15. Jan 17, 2013
    9
    Nice movie, again Ben Affleck made an amazing film
  16. Jan 16, 2013
    9
    I was skeptical and not a big Ben Affleck fan, but this was good, gripping and good acting by all. I wasn't familiar with the story, though I was alive when this happened. Good movie overall. Maybe made more suspenseful than real life, from what I read, but that's hollywood. right? Good story and took some balls to pull it off.
  17. Jan 14, 2013
    9
    This is an impressive offering from Ben Affleck, who is finally emerging from the Hollywood Hall of Lame to remake a name for himself. He was always talented, but fell out of favour after Armageddon, Pearl Harbor, Gigli and his bizarre and very public relationship with Jennifer Lopez. I think he's redeemed himself with Argo, a fast-paced thriller based on the true story of the rescue ofThis is an impressive offering from Ben Affleck, who is finally emerging from the Hollywood Hall of Lame to remake a name for himself. He was always talented, but fell out of favour after Armageddon, Pearl Harbor, Gigli and his bizarre and very public relationship with Jennifer Lopez. I think he's redeemed himself with Argo, a fast-paced thriller based on the true story of the rescue of six American diplomats from Tehran during the Iran hostage crisis in 1979. Stranger than fiction, the story is compelling and emotional. If you like a feel-good movie with some substance, you'll find it here. Some reviewers here found the film boring (I certainly did not - I barely blinked for the duration) and others have criticised the film for it's pro-American bias and for glossing over the complexities of the diplomatic crisis itself, and the plight of Iranians in revolutionary Iran. I think this criticism is legitimate, but Affleck can't please both groups: the film has to strike a balance between historical accuracy and theatricality. The scope of the film is limited, but it tells its story well. Affleck outs in a solid performance as CIA operative Tony Mendez. His character looks chronically depressed much of the time, and I suspect he is, as he's separated from his wife and child and apparently an alcoholic. There is a sense from the beginning of the film that this mission, if successful, could redeem him, and he puts everything on the line to achieve that. Perhaps with the exception of Tate Donovan, the hostages themselves are not very engaging characters. Maybe that's the point. John Goodman, Alan Arkin and Bryan Cranston on the other hand play witty, warm and engaging characters, and with great verve. Sheila Vand is impressive as Sahar, Iranian maid to the Canadian ambassador, who helps the hostages and later escapes to Iraq. Victor Garber is great as Canadian Ambassador Ken Taylor, as is Page Leong as his wife Pat. The movie itself recreates the slightly washed-out aesthetic of a late 1970's film beautifully, so it blends seamlessly with contemporaneous documentary footage, and some of what I thought I was documentary footage was actually recreated: real and staged images are displayed side by side during the end credits, as well as pictures of the actual people involved, so we can see how closely the producers recreated the hairstyles, FACIAL-hair-styles, horn-rimmed glasses and polyester waistcoats of the real-life characters who wore them. Alexandre Desplat's soundtrack is evocative, except for a track featuring uilleann pipes in a scene with Ben Affleck (what an Irish folk instrument is doing in a movie about Americans and Canadians in Iran is beyond me). Ultimately I found the film really gripping and fulfilling. There's no underestimating the power of a happy ending, and in a time of ceaseless unrest in the Middle East, a small story of triumph doesn't go astray once in a while. I'm surprised that Argo was largely overlooked it the Oscar nominations, and thrilled that it won best dramatic film, and Affleck best director, at the Golden Globes. I think it's deserved. Expand
  18. 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.
  19. Jan 6, 2013
    10
    Everything about this movie I love, the acting is great, the story is excellent and Affleck shows that he is becoming a great director. It is an engaging view on the foreign dealings between US and Iran. The story is tense and riveting but is broken up by the create change of pace comedy from John Goodman and Alan Arkin. I've seen Lincoln, Les Miserables, Looper, and many other greatEverything about this movie I love, the acting is great, the story is excellent and Affleck shows that he is becoming a great director. It is an engaging view on the foreign dealings between US and Iran. The story is tense and riveting but is broken up by the create change of pace comedy from John Goodman and Alan Arkin. I've seen Lincoln, Les Miserables, Looper, and many other great movies this year but Argo is my pick for the best! Expand
  20. 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.
  21. Dec 31, 2012
    7
    The movie is well-filmed, well-acted, well-directed and well-written. I connected with it emotionally. Yet, as soon as I left the theater, I felt a little empty. The perception that it is an Oscar contender may have set the bar too high. Its been out for several weeks. So 24 hours later, three factors account for my ambivalent attitude. First, I felt a lack of connection with theThe movie is well-filmed, well-acted, well-directed and well-written. I connected with it emotionally. Yet, as soon as I left the theater, I felt a little empty. The perception that it is an Oscar contender may have set the bar too high. Its been out for several weeks. So 24 hours later, three factors account for my ambivalent attitude. First, I felt a lack of connection with the hostages whose lives are at stake. (remember those Die Hard movies?) The file does attempt to connect with them and give us insight into their captivity so "A" for effort. Yet, the story is centered on Ben Affleck who seems to be adopting the Clint Eastwood 'less-is more' acting persona. Second, the movie lacks true suspense because we all know the hostages successfully escape. So in order to compensate for the lack of suspense, the director alters the timeline to create fear and apprehension. It feels contrived. The film has to make it seem as if they won't escape and but the we-are -running-out-of-time- device wears thin. Iin the beginning of the film director Affleck quite successfully uses John Goodman and Alan Arkin's characters to co-create a cover story for CIA agent Affleck's film venture to Iran. But when these characters no longer serve the story, the director nevertheless keeps them involved to generate suspense, humor and emotion. Then, at the climatic ending of the film, Affleck's character who we were told was separated from his wife and family, and whom we never met, goes home to his wife and family. Obviously, this movies heart is in the right place but its apparent who is pulling the strings. [At the movie rating : 7-8; DVD rental: 8-9] Expand
  22. Dec 29, 2012
    9
    A great piece of cinema and a thriller that contains not only a great story based right from history, but a good cast and a keen grip that keeps you glued to the screen. The plot doesn't move too fast and isn't too over the top in action, but it never seems to leave you without much to pay attention to either. Several hilarious moments and lines of dialogue are sprinkled throughout, with aA great piece of cinema and a thriller that contains not only a great story based right from history, but a good cast and a keen grip that keeps you glued to the screen. The plot doesn't move too fast and isn't too over the top in action, but it never seems to leave you without much to pay attention to either. Several hilarious moments and lines of dialogue are sprinkled throughout, with a constant and progressive tension which never lets go. Overall, it paints an interesting picture about the Iranian Hostage Crisis, gives you some insight into the CIA and foreign embassies, and leaves you satisfied. Expand
  23. 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
  24. Dec 27, 2012
    10
    "Argo" is filled with a cast so impeccably acted and a style astoundingly directed. This thriller poises as Ben Affleck's best and perhaps his most masterful as a director of the cinema, a triumphant of the year that unleashes a surge of blood-pumping surprise and comical wit.
  25. 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.
  26. Dec 20, 2012
    9
    I am a 16 year old girl who went to see this with a friend. It started as a history lesson, and if you are able to have an attention span, it turns out into a wonderful movie! Suspense, great acting (Bryan Cranston and Ben Affleck!) It deserves at least one oscar for writing. Humor is with John Goodman and Alan Arkin. Fantastic movie! I was cheering at the end! Well done, Ben! Make more movies!
  27. 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.
  28. Dec 2, 2012
    8
    If I mentioned that Ben Affleck was a good director a number of years ago, a lot of people would probably smirked at me. Let's face it though: as an actor, Affleck has limited range. But as a Writer and Director, he is actually pretty good. Affleck creates the same films that Michael Mann creates, grittier but somehow better in many ways. Characters are developed nicely; he neverIf I mentioned that Ben Affleck was a good director a number of years ago, a lot of people would probably smirked at me. Let's face it though: as an actor, Affleck has limited range. But as a Writer and Director, he is actually pretty good. Affleck creates the same films that Michael Mann creates, grittier but somehow better in many ways. Characters are developed nicely; he never forgets his audiences so his films are tightly structured. His films are still stylish but gritty and realistic at the same time. Mann's films, on the other hand, seemed to be drowned too much in style, losing its narrative drive. Argo is the best example of his talent, and one of the better films coming out this year. Not the Best Picture, but deserves a nomination for it in this year's Oscars. Expand
  29. Dec 1, 2012
    9
    This is an amazing story if you enjoy sitting on the edge of your seat most of the time! The movie starts out fairly quickly, and it gets more and more exciting as the movie moves forward. The movie goer is never really sure what the end of the story might be (unless you remember the international news story). If you like movies about current history, this will fascinate you and keepThis is an amazing story if you enjoy sitting on the edge of your seat most of the time! The movie starts out fairly quickly, and it gets more and more exciting as the movie moves forward. The movie goer is never really sure what the end of the story might be (unless you remember the international news story). If you like movies about current history, this will fascinate you and keep you on the edge of your seat with excitement. Wonderful movie! Expect to be thrilled with all the action and suspense. Expand
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.