Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Zero Dark Thirty

As I'm nearing the end of our book, I recognized that this text was by far the most interesting of any assigned to me throughout my college experience. Perhaps the design, the look and feel of a leisurely novel, had something to do with it. Maybe it had more to do with the fact that it was an easy read given the interesting nature of the subject matter. More than anything, though, I think it was the author's voice. Rosenblum does an excellent job of making the material relatable. One of the ways he does this is by providing examples throughout the text in which you, as a reader, can create simple experiments for yourself at home to test the theories. Even if you don't go through with the actual experiments, it's written in such a way that makes it easy to envision what this might feel like.

Many of the experiments (and many of the book's central ideas) revolve around sensory deprivation of some sort and testing your body and mind's ability to compensate for the lack of senses by heightening other senses. I immediately had a flash back to the last time I remembered this happening involuntarily; it happened when I went to see Zero Dark Thirty in the theater.

For those of you unfamiliar with the film, this was the appraised move about the capture of Osama Bin Laden. Regardless of your familiarity or views on the topic, the last fourteen to fifteen minutes of this movie truly leave you on the edge of your seat. The entire last seen is shot in night vision, and captures every detail of the mission to finally capture Bin Laden. To enhance the realism, very little noise is made by the actors as they land and enter the house their target is residing it. Viewers are left with the combination of impaired vision and almost no sound; the effect is chilling. I noticed, however, that I was paying attention to every excruciating detail. The littlest movement across the screen and my eyes were drawn to the area. The faintest noise and I was perfectly aware of what was occurring. I realize, after taking this class, that my senses were becoming heightened temporarily to compensate for the deprivation that was taking place.

The trailer is included in a link below for anyone that wants to get an idea of the movie (unfortunately the last scene I referenced is not included). Please note the subject matter, just in case this is a trigger for anyone. Otherwise, I'd recommend seeing it!

Zero Dark Thirty Trailer


  1. Great post and great movie! I've never experienced a helicopter crash, just like in the movie, but I did experience a somewhat scary incident inside of a Black Hawk Helicopter. We were landing at a forward operating base and we suddenly caught an updraft, which turned our helicopter slightly sideways. At this point, I was staring straight at the ground, swallowing my tongue and thinking "well, this is how I'm going to die." That crash scene in the movie just gave me the chills and I kind of relived that moment.

  2. The way you describe feeling during the last moments of that movie is spot on to how I felt! Attention to detail is very important, and the concentration I felt watching the end of the movie was unreal. Great post!