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Ben Affleck in a scene from "Argo"

4 out of 4 stars

Directed by
Ben Affleck
Ben Affleck, Bryan Cranston, John Goodman

Ben Affleck is a heck of a director. This was evident in his first feature, 2007's Gone Baby Gone; in his second, 2010's The Town; and now again with Argo, the almost-too-good-to-be-true true story of how the United States and Canada conspired to get six American diplomats out of Tehran in the wake of the 1979-80 Iran hostage crisis. If you think you know, think again: The movie jumps with new information based on recently declassified documents that put Hollywood and the CIA in bed together. Affleck keeps the performances strong and the action clipping along. Proof that a story's working: It holds you in suspense even though you know the outcome. Plus, he looks really good in a beard.

Sept. 7, 6:30 p.m., Roy Thomson Hall; Sept. 8, 11 a.m., and Sept. 15, 3 p.m., Elgin

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