Thirteen Days

It was America's greatest test, her greatest challenge. The fate of the world begins here. But never fear, the President, leader of the free world has help.... his high school football buddy Kenny.

Yep, that's right, 13 Days, dramatic recreation of the Cuban missile crisis, stars Kevin Costner as JFK's best bud and special assistant. Why is "Kenny" the main character? And why the heck does JFK's coffee boy dictate so much national policy?

Rather than following JFK as he makes some of the toughest and most important decisions in the history of the world to avoid nuclear holocaust, 13 Days follows his assistant Kenny as Kenny moves in and around the White House assisting the Kennedy's and doing his best to make sure there is a big cover-up.

13 Days is actually a decent film, in spite of the fact that Costner is in it. Well directed and smartly written, it successfully takes viewers through the tension, infighting, and indecision of these momentous moments. It seems that in fact, for the first time in years, Costner has actually picked a good film to be in. Sadly, the Hobbit thinks 13 Days picked the wrong actor to be in it.

Its not that Costner is a bad actor, because he isn't. In truth he really is a fine actor with a penchant for picking bad flicks and then convincing backers to waste money on giving him a big budget to make them. In this case though, Costner has picked a good movie to make, unfortunately he has picked a bad role to play. "Kenny" just isn't his style. Somewhere along the way Costner has gotten the idea that he is great at playing these hard, hard edged characters, but that just isn't true. Costner is really much better at playing a stoic. But that is what Kenny is, and some how, this brave, hard man thing that Costner does just never seems to work. Yet what detracts most from 13 Days is Kevin's accent... which is outrageously horrible. Did he put ANY thought into it? Not only is it over the top, its inconsistent. Throughout the film he noticeably breaks in and out of it, apparently without rhyme or reason. This is especially obvious in light of the fine job the other actors do throughout the film.

The sad truth is, without Costner, 13 Days would be a lot better. It has the feel of some sort of 12 Angry Men remake, with the majority of the script taking place in small conference room as tension mounts between different factions in the white house and all struggle to find the right course to save the free world from total annihilation. 13 Days is about a battle of wills and good men making tough decisions.

Gripping, insightful, and Costner ridden, ultimately 13 Days is an intense and well written ride, with enough to keep even the most astute history buff interested.

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