Code Name: Geronimo - The Hunt for Osama Bin Laden
Airing in the US just days before last month’s election, SEAL Team 6 (as it was then titled) caused a minor outrage, attracting accusations that distributor and Obama-supporter Harvey Weinstein was trying to influence ‘undecideds’ with a strategically-timed reminder of the President’s first-term accomplishments. Obama went on to secure a second term, of course, but this badly-conceived dramatisation of the raid on Bin Laden’s Abbottabad compound is unlikely to have swayed even the most easily-manipulated of voters.
While its military re-enactments create a certain amount of tension, the lead-up is hokey and unconvincing, as the filmmakers strain to inscribe personality on a cast of ciphers through hackneyed backstories and substantial guesswork. It’s the latter flaw that rankles most: by rushing into production before the dust had settled, Code Name: Geronimo is left looking ill-informed and sapped of credibility. Hopefully Kathryn Bigelow’s forthcoming Zero Dark Thirty will offer a more considered take on events, with a more appropriate degree of moral complexity. [Chris Buckle]