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67

Generally favorable reviews - based on 31 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 28 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: A dramatization of what took place in the White House as John F. Kennedy (Greenwood) learns the news that Cuba has missiles. The film is seen through the eyes of the Chief of Staff (Costner).
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 31
  2. Negative: 2 out of 31
  1. Fascinating in its depiction of presidential leadership in action.
  2. A mesmerizingly suspenseful drama.
  3. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    80
    Keeps you hanging on every twist and turn of its wilder-than-fiction plot.
  4. Dealing with all these crises and decisions gives Thirteen Days a surprising amount of tension and watchability for a story whose outcome we already know.
  5. 67
    A suspenseful breath of fresh air following on the heels of one of the dumbest Hollywood summers in recent memory.
  6. Reviewed by: Robert Horton
    30
    This overdone project dissipates its energy in strange ways (sudden shifts to black-and-white, as though hailing the spirit of Oliver Stone and that other Costner JFK movie), and makes you wish its makers had shown the same restraint the government did during the crisis.

See all 31 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 13
  2. Negative: 0 out of 13
  1. Apr 3, 2013
    8
    Led by strong performances by Greenwood and Culp, Thirteen Days is an interesting and taught political drama, even if the final outcome is known to all (hint we weren't all incinerated by mutual nuclear destruction). In addition to the Kennedy administration, the narrative covers the roles of both the military and US UN representatives in the crisis. I've always thought that the roles of military personnel in movies is clich├ęd in the manner they always push for war, but seeing as this film depicts actual events (according to the source book) it turns out that that is actually the case. In fact, in this case the military chiefs repeatedly undermine JFK's restrained by not cancelling a planned atom bomb test or spy flights close to the Soviet Union.

    The script faithfully recreates actual speeches given by JFK during the crisis, 'not merely peace in our time but peace for all time' and both Greenwood and Culp accurately nail the Boston Irish accent of the Kennedy family. Unfortunately the same cannot be said for the film's lead and producer, Kevin Costner. His accent veers from credible to laughable to non-existent during the film and his failings are only highlighted by his co-stars' performances.
    Expand
  2. Nov 28, 2012
    7
    Even with its occasional stylistic missteps and pacing issues, "Thirteen Days" still grips the audience and solidly establishes its worth as a tense and morally complex political period drama. Expand

See all 13 User Reviews

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