Dissatisfied with the state of her career covering low-profile stories, television journalist Kim Baker (Tina Fey) agrees to take a short assignment as a war correspondent in Afghanistan during Operation Enduring Freedom, to the disappointment of her boyfriend Chris (Josh Charles), who also spends a lot of time traveling. Assigned low-budget living quarters with other international journalists, she begins friendships with noted Australian correspondent Tanya Vanderpoel (Margot Robbie) and openly lecherous Scottish freelance photographer Iain MacKelpie (Martin Freeman).
After a period of adjustment aided by her Afghan “fixer” Fahim Ahmadzai (Christopher Abbott), she begins taking well to the assignment, eliciting frank remarks on camera from soldiers questioning the value of their assignment there, and putting herself in harm’s way to capture combat incidents on video. American Marines commander General Hollanek (Billy Bob Thornton) takes a dim view of her, as an inexperienced nuisance.
Despite the danger, Kim stays in Afghanistan for months, then years beyond her original assignment. She catches Chris unprepared with a middle-of-the-night video call, and finds him with another woman, ending their relationship. Against her better judgment, she begins a sexual relationship with Iain, which over time also develops into a more personal one.
Although her status as a woman presents challenges in a society which places restrictive roles on women, she also uses it to her advantage, gaining access to women in a village who explain that they’ve been sabotaging the US-built well because they welcome the daily walk to the river away from the men, and recklessly carrying a camera under a burqa to record a religious demonstration.
She also walks a tightrope, taking advantage of the thinly-veiled sexual interest of Afghan government figure Ali Massoud Sadiq (Alfred Molina) to use him as a source. Fahim – who treated opium addicts before the war – cautions her, pointing out that danger can be like a drug.
Whiskey, Tango, Foxtrot
Directed by: Glenn Ficarra, John Requa
Starring: Margot Robbie, Tina Fey, Martin Freeman, Billy Bob Thornton, Alfred Molina, Ava Del Cielo, Evan Jonigkeit, Julianne Medina
Screenplay by: Robert Carlock
Production Design by: Beth Mickle
Cinematography by: Xavier Grobet
Film Editing by: Jan Kovac
Costume Design by: Lisa Lovaas
Set Decoration by: Lisa K. Sessions
Art Direction by: Derek Jensen
Music by: Nick Urata
Studio: Paramount Pictures
Release Date: March 4, 2016