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Thirteen Days (2000)

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modern history
Boston College

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  1. Introduction
  2. The words spoken by John F. Kennedy in his address to the nation on October 22, 1962
  3. The film: The entire thirteen days of the crisis
  4. The interpretation that Donaldson used in the film
  5. Donaldson's portrayal of the military personal: The Joint Chiefs of Staff
  6. The heroes of the event
  7. Conclusion
  8. Bibliography

Good evening my fellow citizens?This Government, as promised, has maintained the closest surveillance of the Soviet Military buildup on the island of Cuba. Within the past week, unmistakable evidence has established the fact that a series of offensive missile sites is now in preparation on that imprisoned island. The purpose of these bases can be none other than to provide a nuclear strike capability against the Western Hemisphere.? These are the exact words spoken by John F. Kennedy in his address to the nation on October 22, 1962.

[...] After reading many historical timelines and sources about the thirteen days of the Cuban Missile Crisis, I must admit that this is one the truest historical films I have scene. The script writers scoured all the sources they could find to make the film as believable as possible. The main source which the script writers used was the book mentioned earlier by May and Zelikow. Not only do these two lay out the events perfectly, but they contain many primary sources, which the writers would have needed to search for in libraries. [...]

[...] The film takes the audience through the entire thirteen days of the crisis, moving in and out of different meetings and conferences. The plot is very true to reality as so are many of the character. Both Greenwood and Stephen Culp, the actor who played Robert Kennedy, studied their characters' voices and defining characteristics very closely, at times almost resembling the two brothers. Most of the dialogue that took place during the EXCOM and other meetings is taken more or less word for word from the documents. [...]

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