Today’s Movie Trailer: Ben Affleck’s Argo

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Based on real events, Argo takes you behind the scenes of the covert operation to rescue six Americans during the 1979 Iran hostage crisis. The guise of the operation? The hostages are part of a Canadian film crew scouting the Iranian capital for a science fiction movie. It’s the “best bad idea” the CIA has, and it’s Ben Affleck’s responsibility to get them out of the country and back home.

The trailer shows how CIA officer Tony Mendez (Affleck) came up with the idea after calling his son who’s watching a sci-fi flick. He then heads to Los Angeles to get all the real materials he needs for a phony film: a script (titled Argo), an exotic location and a producer (Alan Arkin). After faking his way as a Hollywood big shot, he jets to Tehran with the mission to save lives with some movie magic.

(MORE: Ben Affleck Goes to Town)

In addition to starring, Affleck also directs the film, which uses a screenplay inspired by a 2007 Wired article. This is Affleck’s third feature after Gone Baby Gone (2007) and The Town (2010), both of which received critical praise. Other cast members include Bryan Cranston and John Goodman. We also see promising glimpses of Titus Welliver—who has been in all of Affleck’s directed films—Friday Night Lights favorite Kyle Chandler, Philip Baker Hall and Victor Garber.

The film looks riveting, suspenseful and sprinkled with humor. The contrast between the bright lights of Hollywood and the dark fear in Tehran is very real. By the end of the trailer we’re left wondering how Affleck will ever pull this off—and why he is sporting boy bangs.

(LIST: All-TIME 100 Movies)