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Running Time:
1 hr. 51 min.

Rating: R Restricted. Under 17 Requires Accompanying Adult.

Rating Explanation:
for pervasive language, some sexual content, drug use and violent war images

Jimmy's Buzz Guide Review:
The performances of Tina Fey and Martin Freeman are just barely enough to overcome the picture's glib predictability and limited worldview.

Additional Info:
Tina Fey ... Kim Baker
Margot Robbie ... Tanya Vanderpoel
Martin Freeman ... Iain MacKelpie
Alfred Molina ... Ali Sadiq
Christopher Abbott ... Fahim Ahmadzai
Billy Bob Thornton ... General Hollanek
Nicholas Braun ... Tall Brian
Stephen Peacocke ... Nic
Sheila Vand ... Shakira Khar
Evan Jonigkeit ... Specialist Coughlin
Fahim Anwar ... Jaweed
Josh Charles ... Chris
Cherry Jones ... Geri Taub
Scott Takeda Scott Takeda ... Ed Faber Eli Goodman Eli Goodman ... Tucker Wang

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot
the movie begins during a rowdy dance party in Afghanistan in 2006. As bombs explode outside, the party-goers reveal themselves to be hard-working journalists who rush to report on what they're experiencing, war-wise. Chief among them is Kim Baker (Tina Fey), and she becomes the center of the story as it rewinds to New York City in 2003. Kim is toiling behind the scenes at a cable news network when she and other single, childless employees are implored to volunteer for war duty in the Middle East. With the barest of suggestions that her career is stuck in neutral and only a glancing thought to her romantic relationship, Kim ships out for a three-month assignment.

The film is so loosely-structured and ramshackle throughout its first hour or so that it feels like a sketch comedy show shot on location. That's not terribly surprising, since Robert Carlock wrote the screenplay and is a longtime collaborator with Tina Fey, dating back to their days together on Saturday Night Live and continuing onto the smart sitcom 30 Rock and other ventures.

Clearly, Carlock knows how to tailor material to fit Fey's strengths as a comic actress and, though the first half of Whiskey Tango Foxtrot is only fitfully compelling, it's filled with funny moments. The movie also benefits greatly from the wonderful novelty of tagging along as a woman takes the piss out of macho military men and throws a wrench into the expectations of jaded male journalists.

Kim's transformation from a behind-the-scenes producer to a foolhardy on-camera presence develops almost imperceptibly on screen, which poses a problem for the film as a whole. Without diving any deeper into spoiler territory, it feels like a lot of story gets stuffed into the second half of the narrative, as the refreshing comic perspective is diminished in favor of more traditional wartime dramatics.

The film is difficult to categorize yet enjoyable to experience and distinctive in its approach to wartime humor.

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