13 Hours:

The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi                         4K Ultra HD 

                                       review by Bobby Blakey

Michael Bay got a lot of flak from the geek culture due to their displeasure of the Transformers and TMNT franchises, despite them continuing to make tons of cash. Love him or hate him he has made a name for himself with an uncanny ability to shoot an action film like no other. In 2016 he took on a different kind of action film with 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi and it looked to harken back to some of his more gritty action films. The film features a great cast including John Krasinski, James Badge Dale, Pablo Schreiber, David Denman, Dominic Fumusa, and Max Martini, but could this true story deliver the powerful punch it needs or will it get lost in Bay’s trademark explosions?

13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi follows six elite ex-military operators who fought to protect the CIA against overwhelming odds when terrorists attacked a U.S. diplomatic compound on September 11, 2012. Most films like this that focus on true events tend to spend more time on the buildup and the politics of it all, but thankfully that is not Michael Bay’s style. Here he has just enough set up time for you to meet the team and get some understanding of their personalities and what drives them on some level, but then it becomes a full on action film. This is an intense gritty action spectacle that delivers everything you could want in a film like this. Bay’s signature style is tailor made for this story and his always well-crafted action sequences are executed with brilliant precision as always. The cast all do a great job with the film playing more like an ensemble despite it looking as though Krasinski is the lead here. He is a great actor, but at the time was not one that you might look at as an action star, but he knocked it out of the park along with the rest of the cast.

When the action starts it never lets up setting the stage for numerous explosive moments that are intense and violent as expected. There are some wide shots that

give you a true feeling of a battlefield that is rarely seen in films, but when it is it steps up the game. There was focus on both sides of the battle so that you can see everything unfold like you are there, but seeing the American soldiers in action showcases the true accuracy and focus these guys have. Some may complain of the amount of time the film spends in the dark, but it is well lit and makes sense for the story and reality they are trying to have come across here. In the end this is a great movie that manages to capture the essence of what happened that is unbelievable in itself to what they had to endure in that time. Bay stepped up his game and showcases he can still make a great gritty action film delivering one of his better films to date that harkens back to some of his earlier work.

While this film has already been released on Blu-ray and DVD back in 2016 now Paramount is bringing it home on 4K Ultra for the first time. In addition to the film this release also includes numerous featurettes that take you deeper behind the film and the real life story it is based on. Witness this unbelievable stand with 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi when it hits 4K Ultra HD on June 11th from Paramount Home Entertainment.

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