Tina Fey portrays journalist in the midst of war in the Middle East in “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot”

Molly Keady, Staff Writer

It is clear that throughout her twenty years on-screen, Tina Fey has established herself as a comedy idol through her work in one of the most quoted movies “Mean Girls,” late night comedy show “Saturday Night Live,” and NBC’s “30 Rock.” In her latest film, Tina Fey takes a step back from her comedic reputation and writes “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot,” which would fall in the dramedy (drama/comedy) genre. It didn’t take long for audiences realized that “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot” was not about a woman discovering her love of ballroom dance through an alcohol-based experience. In reality, it is a much more serious film revolving about war in the Middle East.

“Whiskey Tango Foxtrot” is based loosely off of the life and experiences of journalist Kim Barker (Tina Fey). In the film, Kim Baker is a TV producer and journalist living in New York in 2003, and the plot follows the serious, yet entertaining story of an unmarried, childless woman in her forties who decides to turn her life around. Baker leaves her dull cubicle life and launches herself into a dangerous and unfamiliar place: Afghanistan. Baker’s motivation to move to Afghanistan is heavily based on her desire to spice up her life while doing the thing that she loves: investigative journalism.

Arriving in Afghanistan is a culture shock for posh New-Yorker Kim Baker. By moving to a part of the world where women lack the freedom of free-speech, she must adapt her process of investigating, while respecting the contrasting culture. This well written dramedy includes a slight insight of the war in Afghanistan and how international journalists thrive. American journalists are sent into the field in order to  report the detrimental reality of what is going on in Afghanistan.

“Whiskey Tango Foxtrot” realistically captures how unnecessary war is and how it can damage people and their mental health.

— Molly Keady

The job itself is very dangerous when reporting amidst the frontlines of the conflict. The possibility of being kidnapped, injured, or even killed while reporting is a constant threat to these journalists and they must depend on their insights and adrenaline to stay alive. To Kim Baker, adrenaline is like a drug and the film follows her development as a character as she confronts her lack of self-control when it comes to seeking the thrill of capturing a story, even if it costs her own life.

While the trailer gives the impression that “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot” is a comedy due to a hilarious compilation of Fey’s comedic moments, the film itself entices audience members with a balance of witty one-liners, emotional scenes and a cliché, yet necessary, love plot thrown into the mix. Overall, this film highlights Tina Fey’s ability as an actress allowing her to break out of her comedic shell and portray a determined woman willing to do whatever she can to alert the American public about the conflict in Afghanistan.

“Whiskey Tango Foxtrot” realistically captures how unnecessary war is and how it can damage people and their mental health. The film makes it clear how people may become addicted to war and its enhanced reality, not to mention how it creates a temptation for international journalists to take greater risks. All in all, “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot” is a smart, humorous story that is one of the most realistic films that one would ever expect from a film starring Tina Fey.