13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi

13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi

2.8 94 Ratings

Directed by : Michael Bay

Release Date :

  • MJ Rating 2.8/5
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On Sept. 11, 2012, Islamic militants attack the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, killing Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and Sean Smith, an officer for the Foreign Service. Stationed less than one mile away are members (James Badge Dale, John Krasinski, Max Martini) of the Annex Security Team, former soldiers assigned to ...more


“America, Army & Terrorism! If you can handle it again, this one will not be a disappointment!”

13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi Credit & Casting

John Krasinski


Cast (in credits order)

13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi Audience Review

13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi Review

Rated 2.5 / 5

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As was evident in the superb 2013 true-crime satire Pain & Gain, Michael Bay's cinema works best when there's a leaner budget and CGI is generally sparse. 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers Of Benghazi is based on an armed assault that was carried out on the US embassy in Libya in September 2013. Bay's has always been a flagrant and obnoxious brand of cinema, worshipping its buffed up male heroes and mythologizing physical violence by turning it into something "awesome". While Bay stretched that to its extreme to the point that it became absurd farce, the subject matter of 13 Hours demands a dead-serious tone. The result is one of a curious contradiction: Bay is pretty adept at shooting action scenes (he does some really impressive stuff with one chase sequence and a shootout near the end) but he also goes for emotional heartstring-pulling which mostly falls flat. Unlike the grim melodrama of Pearl Harbor, the quieter moments in 13 Hours where action doesn't happen carry a pretty apathetic tone, but that doesn't amount to much because Bay is, as ever, enamored by military valor. But boy, do those action scenes work. There's a Michael Mann-esque quality to how he frames fire sparks against the dusk sky, or how he evokes a wide array of emotions in that superb chase scene. Even though Bay's best skills don't quite go hand in hand with such a solemn topic, 13 Hours showcases a strength of his he seldom gets to display in the grand-scale excesses of the Transformers franchise.