The final word on this incident will require a more thoughtful filmmaker. But hopefully, that artist will possess at least half of Bay's punishing, peerless craft.
The movie is imperfect and overlong but it's never boring. And, although aspects of its factual accuracy can be called into question, it does a decent job of chronicling what happened that night.
Several critics have given 13 Hours a pass, citing Bay's skill at action engineering. It's his failure at everything else that makes this movie as hard to endure as it is impossible to believe. #helpme
[Bay] does well here what he always does well: He keeps the action at full throttle. This is also what he does so annoyingly: He always keeps things at full throttle.
[Bay] is hell on manly banter amid the explosions ("Just another Tuesday night in Benghazi"), and also moments carefully calculated to make you feel the horrors - and the heroics - of war. Emphasis on "calculated."
Bay's action sequences are as riveting and technically beautiful as ever, but his reductive worldview is also on display. "13 Hours" doesn't just lionize its American soldiers, it oozes disdain for everyone else.
13 Hours presents itself as a straightforward war film, but that's the last thing a subject this complex needed.
Unfortunately while Bay has an eye, he's never had an ear, and Chuck Hogan's screenplay is full of clunkers, tough-guy dialogue that seems made strictly for cheap applause.
If they are suffering the fog of war, you are suffering the fog-of-action movie, a phenomenon that Bay is all too well equipped to create, having previously worked on the Transformers franchise.