Zero Dark Thirty is an Oscar frontrunner, but what would Oscar season be without a dash of politics? In the taut thriller about the hunt for Osama bin Laden, screenwriter Mark Boal and director Kathryn Bigelow depict the American use of waterboarding leading to a suspect revealing crucial information. But the New Yorker has cast doubt on the veracity of that specific scene, citing government officials who claim that waterboarding — a controversial tactic that many consider torture — played no role in yielding useful evidence in that situation or ultimately helped the C.I.A. locate bin Laden’s hideout.
Boal, a former journalist, has defending the decision, arguing that “it’s a movie, not a documentary,” and the film’s main principals stood behind their work at last night’s Los Angeles premiere. “We had to compress a very complicated debate and a 10-year period into two hours,” Boal said. “It doesn’t surprise me that people bring political agendas to the film but it doesn’t actually have a political agenda. Its agenda is to tell these people’s stories in the most honest and factual way we know how, based on a ton of interviews and research.” READ FULL STORY