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Whiskey Tango Foxtrot (2016)

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A journalist recounts her wartime coverage in Afghanistan.


Robert Carlock (screenplay by), Kim Barker (based on the book "The Taliban Shuffle: Strange Days in Afghanistan and Pakistan" by)
1 nomination. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Tina Fey ... Kim Baker
Margot Robbie ... Tanya Vanderpoel
Martin Freeman ... Iain MacKelpie
Alfred Molina ... Ali Massoud 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 ... Ed Faber
Eli Goodman ... Tucker Wang


2003. After careful consideration, Kim Baker, a news copywriter, decides to leave the relative comfort of a New York desk job and serious boyfriend Chris to accept the assignment to work for three months as on-camera reporter in war torn Afghanistan, as her news agency is looking for anyone within their ranks to fill immediately the empty voids overseas. Her only experience of being in such an environment is going through hostile zone training a few years earlier. Immediately upon her arrival in Afghanistan, she realizes that she is ill-prepared emotionally for this assignment, not only enduring the dangers of the war itself, but also the conditions of everyday life, including largely been seen by men as only a "piece of ass" and a distraction despite her being considered average looking back home and not being overtly sexual, and being an individual with a small bladder who is nonetheless told to stay hydrated at all times. She is largely assisted in navigating this new life by Tanya... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


From the headlines to the front lines


Biography | Comedy | Drama | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive language, some sexual content, drug use and violent war images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »


Official Sites:

Official Facebook




English | Pushto | Dari | French

Release Date:

4 March 2016 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Taliban Shuffle See more »

Filming Locations:

Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA See more »


Box Office


$35,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$7,443,007, 6 March 2016, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$23,049,575, 24 April 2016

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Datasat | Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The words "whiskey," "tango," and "foxtrot" stand for the letters W, T, and F in the international NATO Phonetic Alphabet, a military and law-enforcement system for clearly spelling out words and phrases during radio and other audio transmissions."WTF" is an early 21st Century abbreviation for "What the Fuck?" It has also become a popular title for network television shows that are otherwise prevented by their networks' standards and practices departments from the outright use of the word "fuck". TV shows including The Good Wife, NCIS, Jake 2.0, and Scandal have all titled episodes "Whiskey Tango Foxtrot". See more »


On at least two occasions characters refer to an 'IUD' when they mean home-made bomb - the expression should be IED for improvised explosive device. See more »


Specialist Coughlin: There's only so much any of us have any control of, good or bad. If you didn't learn that in Afghanistan, you were not paying attention.
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(Nick Zinner Mix)
Written by Sean Antanaitis, David Bergander & Katrina Ford
Performed by Celebration
Courtesy of Magic Paw, under arrangement by Syncalicious Music
Courtesy of 4AD
By arrangement with Beggars Group Media Limited
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User Reviews

Denigrating Afghans, American bravado, Female empowerment and not funny!
25 September 2017 | by ankranaSee all my reviews

This movie is another one from the lazy mind chain that we simply have started to refer to as 'Hollywood' nowadays. I could digest some of the American jingoism paraded recently in all their sci-fi movies, but when you are delivering something about a region torn by American hegemonic war of 16 years (and counting), the jokes about Afghan men humping donkeys as a joke just brings bad taste in the mouth.

The movie is based on the memoirs of a news journalist (real life Kim Baker book ' The Taliban shuffle') who is reluctantly pushed in the war torn Afghanistan to cover the media news coverage. Tina fey stars as the main character. I'm not particularly fan of Tina fey and her pretending to put a girlish vibe in her 40's just doesn't cut it. The western women are presented as some sex deprived nymphs with lines of "when your p** starts eating your leg after 2 months then tell me". Really are women in west so thirsty after 2 months?. Almost half the movie is filled with partying of women, drinking, trying to be adventurous or just delivering nasty one liners to men about urinating in the open or becoming bold every time with false bravado. (seriously?)

Characters don't really seem to give any heed to the country they are trying to cover OR the poor people they are supposed to be looking out as foreign 'saviours'. Afghans are portrayed as someone belonging to neolithic period and so is the country. As a consultant who has visited Afghanistan around the same period, I can safely say that all the caricatures developed here are utter nonsense and denigrating to the country's state as many of the amenities available in a developed society are available in Afghanistan's bigger cities. Same is the depiction of Chinese brothels in Afghanistan and lines uttered about 'Taliban punishing men whose under hair used to curl on their sticks(!)' (spoken by some high profile Afghan senator) which is another unverified account.

In reality what the movie overlooks completely how American soldiers stationed in Afghanistan are living in one of the highly sophisticated luxury affairs that any soldier can dream nowadays. Hollywood depictions of how American system is better than others by taking puns on other cultures are coming off as fake and repetitively boring.

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