A Review of 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi (2016)

“Welcome to Benghazi.”

13 Hours in Benghazi (as I like to incorrectly call it) is a film directed by the divisive Michael Bay, based on the events in Libya in 2012. His directorial style is evident with the horizontal and vertical panning shots, sparks trailing off every explosive and some slanted shots. 

That doesn’t instantaneously make it a bad film; Michael Bay has demonstrated time an again he can do action very well.

There is some gory flinch worthy violence which I welcome in war films. The reality of the situation is displayed. Some scenes are very tense, later enthralling when the action breaks out. The on-edge moments were aided by the fantastic score, composed by Lorne Balfe (Modern Warfare 2, Assassins Creed 3) supported by the legendary Hans Zimmer.

The characters are cliché, they’re acted in a sufficient capacity. The comedy gets a little overwhelming at some points, almost detaching you from the action but some may find it entertaining. The film was, from a realistic military perspective, semi-tactically aware. I picked up on a few bad edits, where someone lowers their gun and it is still raised in the next scene for example.

To compare this film to other similar films; a lightweight Black Hawk Down (2001), smaller in scope than American Sniper (2014), not as well acted as Lone Survivor (2013). If you like these films then 13 Hours is definitely for you.

Overall Rating: 7.5/10

Well, I’m off to play some Insurgency now.

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A Review of 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi (2016)

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