Sunday, March 27, 2016

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot

    Tina Fey finds a perfect star vehicle in this new dramedy based on the memoirs of television journalist Kim Barker. Ms. Barker was a reporter in Afghanistan in the mid 2000's , who thought she's be there for a few months and ended up staying for a few years.

     Ms. Fey is very good as the initial fish out of water who eventually fits right in with the rest of the foreign press corp covering the growing war.  As smart and funny as she is, it's not enough to carry a weak script that lacks any real depth. The film tries hard to be both funny and serious and ends up weaker for it. The only thing of interest is watching Ms. Fey move through a variety of situations, unfortunately filmed as if they were sketches and not one cohesive story.

       The film co-stars Billy Bob Thorton as a general who admires Kim's resolve. Martin Freeman as a war photographer who becomes a love interest, Alfred Molina as a cartoon version of an Afghan official and Margot Robbie as the only other woman among the journalists. Christopher Abbott also co-stars as a friendly Afghan which is a pretty strange casting decision.

        I stayed engaged only because the film was based on a true story but a stronger script, true or embellished would have made a stronger movie.

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