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Whiskey Tango Foxtrot


Stars: Tina Fey, Martin Freeman, Margot Robbie, Christopher Abbott, Billy Bob Thornton, Alfred Molina

Director: Glenn Ficarra, John Requa

Or: Three Years in Afghanistan.

Despite flaws in the telling, this is an often deeply affecting and, on the whole, perceptively told account of real-life journalist Kim Baker (Fey), who jumps at the chance to move from her desk job in America and become a war correspondent.

The subsequent realities of life in Afghanistan are perhaps simply but nonetheless effectively portrayed, as are Baker's relationships with the local commanding office (Thornton) and a mouthy Scottish photo-newshound (Freeman, with a respectable Scottish accent).

We also meet a rival female correspondent (Robbie, not terribly convincing) and the local district attorney, sketched in rather broad lines by a weighty Molina.

Bits of the film are funny, bits exciting and bits touching: it's a difficult subject that has problems with consistency of tone, with which it copes with some credit. Fey may be a little old for the role of the woman who loses her boyfriend back home as her stay of three months progressively extends to three years, but she lives the part and carries the centre of the film pretty well.

David Quinlan

USA 2015. UK Distributor: Paramount. Colour by Arri.
109 minutes. Not widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 1, Violence/Horror 2, Drugs 1, Swearing 3.

Review date: 11 May 2016