Fascinating story, excellent acting and directing, and above all a sense of history which seemed spot on. Although I knew the outcome, I was still in suspense up to the last moments of the escape.Lester Siegel: Okay, you got 6 people hiding out in a town of what, 4 million people, all of whom chant "death to America" all the livelong day. You want to set up a movie in a week. You want to lie to Hollywood, a town where everybody lies for a living. Then you're gonna sneak 007 over here into a country that wants CIA blood on their breakfast cereal, and you're gonna walk the Brady Bunch out of the most watched city in the world.
Tony Mendez: Past about a hundred militia at the airport. That's right.
Lester Siegel: Right. Look, I gotta tell you. We did suicide missions in the army that had better odds than this.
As someone who was in college when the Iranians took the American embassy workers hostage, I was suddenly mentally right back in that time as the shots of the mob and protests were shown. It was like watching the news every night all over again.
I was impressed not only by the quality of the acting but by the script which didn't have much time to tell everybody's story but which gave us enough to make us understand and care. Perhaps one of my favorite characters was the Iranian cultural official who was giving a tour of the bazaar. He was obviously just a normal person, excited to be connected with a movie, who had his own idea of what would make a good flick. The way that normal characters like that were interspersed with the fanatical revolutionaries was a nice touch to remind us that amongst the chaos there were regular people trying to live under trying circumstances.
This movie deserved every award it received.