13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi (Movie Review)


Kaitie Toal shared her thoughts on this action-packed movie.

Kaitie Toal

13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi is a war thriller directed by Michael Bay that follows the actions of a private security team stationed in the middle of the tumultuous in Benghazi. The movie is based off the real life actions of the people and soldiers that were stationed in the war torn city.

Though the movie is based off of actual events, Bay puts his typical spin and creates a movie dedicated to explosions and car crashes rather than the people that experienced the Benghazi attacks. The artistically choreographed explosions and chases have more screen time than the protagonist, Jack, played by John Krasinski.

The acting is the one redeeming characteristic that the film possesses. The actors create relatable and sympathetic characters but the empathy that the audience has for them should be questioned.

Bay’s explosive movie follows in the footsteps of Clint Eastwood’s 2014 film American Sniper and the similarities do not stop with the guns and explosions.

13 Hours targets and stereotypes Muslims throughout creating a that uses a real life situation to perpetuate patriotic fervor in the same fashion that American Sniper has. There was a particular scene where the enemies of Jack and his fellow soldiers were praying while Bay artistically frames machine guns and shot guns into the scene.

The movie industry seems to have switched jobs from creating entertainment to creating propaganda for the American Government. Both 13 Hours and American Sniper put faces to the war that has been going on since 2001, making it impossible to feel uneasy towards the Government’s belligerent actions.

As CNN reporter Todd McCarthy states in his review of 13 Hours, “But while this adaptation superficially goes out of its way to avoid being overtly political, its patriotic tenor is as unmistakable as its sentimentality.” Bay’s film creates a stark contrast between the American soldiers and the religion that the media recently has begun to attack. Much like American Sniper, 13 Hours generates a prejudice towards Muslims that is misdirected and unprecedented.