Thursday, August 15, 2013

Movie Review: Thirteen Days

Thirteen days poster.jpgCurrently in my US History/Government class we are talking about the Kennedy Administration. Last week, I told you about great resources to use with the Bay of Pigs.  After teaching Bay of Pigs, I switch to the Cuban Missile Crisis and I show this clip from Thirteen Days. Until today I hadn't actually seen the movie, and I will start showing it to my class tomorrow.

So I thought I would do a movie review....

Summary: Kenny O'Donnell serves as special assistant to the president when the intelligence community realizes that there are missiles being built by the Soviet Union in Cuba.  They realize that these missiles can hit 1,000 miles away--and Cuba is only 90 miles away.  These missiles will be operational in 12-14 days, so this is not a good thing for the U.S.  They have to decide whether to do an air strike and then invade.  Secretary of Defense McNamara suggests doing a blockade, like a quarantine--which buys them some time.  What will the President do and how do we end up avoiding war?

What I Loved:
  • I loved how much history you could just tell is in this---now it is still a dramatic representation. Apparently Kenny O'Donnell is not that big of a character in real-life, but I think that helps
  • It really examines how a president makes a decision and the amount of people that really weight in on this 
  • If you didn't live in the 1960s, you cannot really completely comprehend the fear that we had about going to war again....with the Soviet Union. This movie really puts that into perspective
What I Didn't Like:
  • Kevin Costner's accent--heck everyone's Boston accents--holy crap awful!! Like there were moments where I wondered if we suddenly switched to British accents and there were moments where the same actor would pronounce the same word two different ways
  • The acting overall was kind of lame...but not horrible
  • They would go into black and white to color points it made sense but at other points it made no sense.
Bottom Line: I am excited to see what my students think and I definetely recommend it to history teachers and geeks everywhere!

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