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Monday, April 8, 2013

From the Academy Award®-Winning Writer and Director of “The Hurt Locker” ZERO DARK THIRTY IS GIVEN WHOM YOU KNOW'S HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION - THE GREATEST MANHUNT IN HISTORY Nominated for Five Academy Awards® – including Best Picture, Best Actress, Best Original Screenplay, Best Editing and Best Sound Editing OUR COVERAGE SPONSORED BY SPARKLE & WIT RHINESTONE APPAREL AND TOTES

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Our coverage is dedicated to the memory of Navy Seal Brian Bill, now memorialized by his sister Amy Bill Kutney & her husband Chad Kutney here:
Chief Special Warfare Operator (SEAL) Brian Bill was a highly decorated combat veteran with numerous awards, including the Bronze Star Medal with Valor (4), including one for extraordinary heroism, Purple Heart Medal, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service Commendation Medal with Valor, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Combat Action Ribbon (2), Presidential Unit Citation (2), Navy Unit Commendation, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, and numerous other personal and unit decorations. O
n 6 August 2011, a Chinook helicopter, call sign Extortion 17, was shot down by enemy fire in Afghanistan taking the lives of 38 people on board. Brian was one of 17 SEALs aboard that helicopter. He was 31 years old. Brian rests in Arlington National Cemetery alongside many of his teammates who also perished in action on that day.  Amy and Brian are the cousins of Peachy Deegan.

"A lot of my friends have died doing this.  I believe I was spared so I could finish the job."

We all know how it ends, but no one knows how they got there.  Now you are able to know, thanks to the brilliance of Kathryn Bigelow and her dedication to getting every aspect of the film 100% matched to reality, as seen in the bonus features.  And who is Maya?  She is the nimble, brilliantly intelligent, focused, intense, obsessively committed, tireless protagonist and brains behind the whole operation.  Zero Dark Thirty begins with the aftermath of 9/11; everyone knows where they were on September 11th, and some of us lived it firsthand. Peachy Deegan was one-and was about 15 minutes late for work to Three World Financial Center as she voted that morning for Mayor Bloomberg, and if she didn't, Whom You Know may not have happened since she would have been walking under the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center at 9am that day. We have always been patriotic, and the intensity of our national pride has only become stronger throughout the years.  We could not be more thrilled to review Zero Dark Thirty, and are honored to have the chance to comment on such a highly patriotic film.  Thank you Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.

Right from the start, Jessica Chastain delivers a superlative performance, fueled by the intrinsic passion and determination of her character, Maya, who worships at the church of thinking outside the box effectively.  Finding Bin Laden clearly must have been looking for a needle in a haystack, obviously requiring top strategy, the utmost confidentiality, and relentless diligence.  From dog collars to pouring water through a towel and more, the Americans show that the death of three thousand innocent people on 9/11 justifies whatever means necessary to arrive at the answers needed and whatever tips can be made available...and those captured can help themselves by being truthful.  

Zero Dark Thirty takes us around the world to the US Embassy in Islamabad, Pakistan, the CIA Black site in Poland, the 7/7/05 London bus bombing, Bagram Air Force Base in Afghanistan a CIA Black site, to various detention centers and reflections on what is happening back at the CIA in Virginia.  It even takes us to Manhattan, to the Times Square Car Bombing in May 2010.  Thank goodness for the stellar work our favorite policeman Ray Kelly (see right picture) and his team as well as Mayor Bloomberg.  We'll be eternally thankful for him.  From location to location, it is evident how only the best of the best are recruited to execute the high-level directions put in place, and the best of all derive and decide what those directions are.

Maya makes young American women in particular proud, as she is up against many men in suits that don't give her the respect and confidence she deserves.   Arrogant men, particularly as Station Chiefs make her path rockier than it needs to be, and even so, Maya overcomes their lack of confidence and support.  We particularly love her tenacity and her red marker that writes on the glass office window how many days since she found the hidden compound.  After all, she IS the motherfucker who found the place, sir!

 And, she would have preferred a bomb over the canaries...they are complete idiots to believe she was out of her mind in any regard and underestimate her across the board.  Maya says exactly what she wants and needs to be successful in a even-keeled tone, and she's done the research to prove it.  She also finds out that life in Islamabad, Pakistan, never is safe anywhere outside her immediate compound from merely meeting a colleague at the Marriott there which is majorly bombed while she's sipping wine to trying to pull out of her driveway, when she is met with gunfire.  Maya's quick thinking and gut worth its weight in gold propel her to victory, no matter what situation she is faced with.  
At the end of the day, many young American women like Maya perished in the remains of the World Trade Center, and to see her emerge victorious is even more inspiring.  

Zero Dark Thirty gives the audience many more reasons why you should be proud to be an American.  The obvious personal sacrifices involved are put under the microscope in this great work as we see Christmas coming and going without much fanfare and wine in glass tumblers (not even wine glasses...)

Though this movie surpasses the two-hour mark significantly, it speedily goes by as the action and drama will keep you on the edge of your seat throughout.  One of the most gripping moments was Maya at the computer screen doing an online chat with a colleague who was executing a and GPS certainly starred in this work as well.  Every detail was perfection, from the use of dramatic lighting to show the gravity of what was going on, and even the Osama Bin Laden compound was rebuilt to scale by professional architects in full, so camera shots could capture continuous shots going from outside to inside and throughout the bastion of terror that he called home.

What else did we love?  We loved the camaraderie of the American team.  We loved the German Shepherd in the helicopter, who smiled with the brilliance of victory before it happened.  One smart dog!  We loved the look on Maya's face when she saw the Osama dead photos.  And we were cheering when she got that last plane to herself and we gave her a standing ovation.  The emotion outpoured then by Maya we cannot justify verbally.  Taking an educated chance matters, and she shows everyone how to intelligently, diligently, and relentlessly reach their goals with unsurpassed intensity, and Jessica Chastain captures all the right nuances of character, and single-handedly carries this movie for the actors.

This movie answers some big questions, and perhaps the biggest of them all is "How do you evaluate the risk of not doing something?"

As action was taken in real life and action was taken in making this movie, we could not more strongly suggest you take some action and get down to the business of watching this movie.

Zero Dark Thirty has earned Whom You Know's Highest Recommendation.  Watch it and become even prouder to be an American, and even more thankful for our intelligence and special forces.

From the Academy Award®-Winning 
Writer and Director of “The Hurt Locker”

Nominated for Five Academy Awards® – including Best Picture, Best Actress, 
Best Original Screenplay, Best Editing and Best Sound Editing

Mark Boal Awarded Best Original Screenplay by The Writers Guild of America 

Winner of Three New York Film Critics Circle Awards – including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Cinematography

Stars Golden Globe® Winner and Oscar® Nominee Jessica Chastain, 
Jason Clarke, Joel Edgerton and Chris Pratt

Arrives On Blu-ray™ Combo Pack, DVD & Digital March 19th 

The Oscar®-winning team of The Hurt Locker – director-producer 
Kathryn Bigelow (Best Picture and Best Director) and writer-producer Mark Boal (Best Picture and 
Best Original Screenplay) – reunite for the powerful drama ZERO DARK THIRTY. The story of an elite team of intelligence operatives who tracked and ultimately located Osama bin Laden, the film earned multiple Oscar® nominations, including Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay and scored the No. 1 spot on numerous critics’ Top 10 Lists. Boal was also awarded honors for Best Original Screenplay from the 
Writers Guild of America.

ZERO DARK THIRTY debuts March 19th from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment on Blu-ray™ Combo Pack, DVD and Digital, taking viewers inside the hubs of power and to the front lines of the historic pursuit and capture of Osama bin Laden, culminating in a special operations assault on a mysterious, suburban Pakistani compound.

Jessica Chastain, who won a Best Actress Golden Globe and is up for a Best Actress Oscar, stars in 
ZERO DARK THIRTY alongside Jason Clarke (TV’s “Brotherhood”), Joel Edgerton (Animal Kingdom) and Chris Pratt (TV’s “Parks and Recreation”). Also starring in the film is Jennifer Ehle (Pride and Prejudice), Mark Strong (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy), Kyle Chandler (TV’s “Friday Night Lights”) and Edgar Ramirez (TV’s “Carlos”). 

The film has been nominated for numerous awards, including five Academy Award® nominations 
(Best Picture, Best Actress, Best Original Screenplay, Best Editing, and Best Sound Editing) and 
four Golden Globe® nominations (Best Motion Picture Drama, Best Director, Best Screenplay and a 
Best Actress win for Chastain). It has been recognized as one of the best films of 2012, by the American Film Institute and Time Magazine, among others. In addition to garnering honors from the National Board of Review (Best Film, Best Director and Best Actress), the film also won three New York Film Critics Circle Awards (Best Picture, Best Director and Best Cinematography) and a Critics’ Choice Award 
(Best Actress), as well as a Screen Actors Guild nomination (Best Actress). 

The Blu-ray Combo Pack and DVD include four featurettes: "No Small Feat," "The Compound," 
“Targeting Jessica Chastain,” and “Geared Up,” which all provide an in-depth look at the filmmaking process, documenting the great lengths to which cast, crew and filmmakers went to portray the hunt for the world’s most dangerous man.

For a decade, an elite team of intelligence operatives, working in secret across the globe, devoted themselves to a single goal: to find and eliminate Osama bin Laden. Zero Dark Thirty reunites the Oscar® winning team of The Hurt Locker, director-producer Kathryn Bigelow and writer-producer Mark Boal, along with producer 
Megan Ellison, telling the story of history's greatest manhunt for the world's most dangerous man. 
Colin Wilson, Greg Shapiro and Ted Schipper served as executive producers.

Blu-ray™ & DVD Special Features Include:

Four Featurettes:

“No Small Feat”features Bigelow sharing why this project, and the recounting of this historic event, was so important.

“The Compound” lets audiences hear from cast and crew on the recreation of Osama bin Laden’s lair and take a walking tour of the recreated compound.

“Geared Up” provides an in-depth look at the detailed measures taken in training, equipping and filming the raid, as well as cast and crew commentary on this great feat in filmmaking.

“Targeting Jessica Chastain” features cast, crew and Jessica herself reflecting on her role as Maya, the pivotal force at the center of the 10-year manhunt. 

ZERO DARK THIRTY has a run time of approximately 157 minutes and is Rated R for strong violence including brutal disturbing images and for language.

ACADEMY AWARD(S)® is the registered trademark and service mark of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Golden Globe® is the registered trademark of the HFPA.


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