The cojones it took CIA operative Tony Mendez (Ben Affleck) to march into Tehran at the height of the Islamic Revolution and march out with six American embassy workers should put him in the Testicle Hall of Fame, though the true story of Argo was classified until about 15 years ago. Affleck pulls double duty as the star and director in this slick, well-paced grassroots thriller with a distinctive ’70s vibe. As a director, his best achievement is conjuring the different worlds it took to pull this off — the flash of Hollywood, the somberness of D.C. and the horrors of Iran when Americans were persona non grata. Huh — other than the haircuts, it seems not much has changed.


Four stars. Now playing in wide release.