Bayghazi

01.14.16 5:01 AM ET

‘13 Hours’ Is Porn for Conspiracy Theorists

Conspiracy theorists who believe Benghazi was an inside job or that Barack Obama is a gay Muslim are some of the staunchest supporters of Michael Bay’s new Benghazi-based explosion movie.

Will the new Michael Bay movie become a colossal political firestorm for Hillary Rodham Clinton? Well, there certainly are plenty of people who want to turn it into one.

Bay’s newest explode-a-thon, this one based on the Benghazi attack, has already captured the attention—if not affections—of many famous conservative figures who have for years indulged in conspiracy-mongering about the siege.

On Friday, Paramount Pictures releases the action-thriller, 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi, which dramatizes the story of the six-man security team that defended the U.S. compound and CIA annex in Benghazi, Libya, at the time of the 2012 attack. Bay, the pyrotechnics-loving director who gave the world the majestic hits Armageddon and Transformers, has promised that he is not making a political statement with his Benghazi picture.

“No, no, there is no political agenda,” he emphatically told The Hollywood Reporter late last year.

Although Bay’s filmography does have something of a politically conservative streak, he once said in an interview with Mother Jones magazine that, while he considers himself a very “political person,” he does not “feel the need to go out and tell people what to believe politically.”

Regardless, the Benghazi attack, which claimed the lives of four Americans, has become perhaps the most bitterly divisive and partisan issue of the Obama era. Any Hollywood blockbuster that comes out about the assault will inevitably be analyzed by many through a political lens. (Bay’s mother, who is reportedly a bit of a national politics junkie, even urged her son not to involve himself with such a production.)

13 Hours’ release date, weeks before the first presidential primary in the heat of an election year, has been annoying Hillary Clinton’s longtime loyalists and pals for months now.

“Republicans have already made clear they will use this movie to revive theories discredited by their own party’s investigators to continue their admittedly partisan attacks against Hillary Clinton,” David Brock, founder of the pro-Hillary rapid-response group Correct the Record, told The New York Times in October.

That assumption is not entirely unfounded. Fox News personalities have absolutely fallen in love with 13 Hours, framing it as a direct threat to Clinton’s chances at the White House.

But the film’s biggest fans might be the conspiracy theorists who believe in elaborate espionage plots instead of any official narrative of the 2012 attack.

“It’s devastating, it’s true, and it really hits you very hard,” Tom Fitton, president of the right-wing watchdog group Judicial Watch, told The Daily Beast.

“Anyone who thinks they understand Benghazi, you realize you don’t understand it until you see a movie like this. It dramatically and convincingly depicts what happened there,” Fitton said.

Fitton, who attended a Washington, D.C., advance screening of 13 Hours on Tuesday, said the movie appeared to “reference some of the material [Judicial Watch] disclosed,” and that he did not notice any major factual errors.

“[The film] really highlights the failure of the Obama administration to come to the rescue,” he continued. “It is devastating to the Obama administration’s lies. The film will have political ramifications. I don’t think Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton will want anyone to see this movie. It is not going to be comfortable for them. It is put to [viewers] repeatedly that they were asking for help… Help was near. And nothing was done.”

For the record, Clinton is never referenced in 13 Hours; Obama’s voice is heard only briefly.

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“Political consequences aside, it’s a good movie,” Fitton said, calling it a “graphic” and entertaining two hours that “packs an emotional wallop.”

Other Benghazi-conspiracy enthusiasts who haven’t had the opportunity to see it are hedging their expectations about the big-budget flick. But all of them hope it will provide a voice to what they believe to be unspoken truths about the attack, or at least raise awareness about the alleged scandal.

“It just looks like it’ll give me a headache,” Infowars radio host (and protector of gay frogs) Alex Jones said in a phone interview with The Daily Beast. Although he didn’t want to judge the movie before seeing it, Jones doesn’t have a lot of faith in a filmmaker who can’t even get the radio host’s own teenage son to pay attention to robots hacking and blasting each other to pieces.

“Am I going to see Optimus Prime battle Megatron?” Jones said, breaking into one of his burly guffaws that sound like curdled milk falling through a sandpaper sieve. “Is this something I’m supposed to take my 7-year-old to?”

For Jones, who contends that the Benghazi attack was a cover-up for an elaborate arms transfer to al Qaeda mercenaries in Syria, he just hopes that the movie exposes the “truth” to a mass audience.

“I hope they look at the facts,” Jones said. “There’s some kind of Nixonian cover-up here.”

He plans on seeing it in theaters soon, since a “military type” friend of his recently raved about an online version of the film. Jones says he will call The Daily Beast with his review and thoughts afterward. “The claim that no one knew anything is pure bull,” he added.

Other prominent #Benghazi aficionados are willing to be more generous toward Bay.

Former Republican Congressman (and Tea Party darling) Allen West, who believes the same Benghazi narrative as Jones and who once infamously vacated a media job after calling a staffer a “Jewish American princess,” said he plans on seeing the movie Friday evening.

“I know one of the authors of [the book] 13 Hours who was there,” West said, predicting the narrative arc of the movie would be focused on heroism over politics.

However, West’s own website published a blog post stating that the movie left out a huge detail by omitting specific references to Hillary Clinton.

“I don’t think the absence of Hillary from the film will save her popularity,” the Analytical Economist, West’s pseudonymous colleague, blogged on Monday. “It’s a scandal that everyone already attaches her name to regardless—the film will just allow the public to learn in detail about what happened on that day.”

Others like WorldNetDaily reporter Jerome Corsi, who once argued in an appearance on Alex Jones’s show that Hillary Clinton and Huma Abedin are lesbians from the Muslim Brotherhood, are just excited about the riveting action.

“If it's like the book, I expect the politics to be the back-story that frames the action,” the jowly bespectacled writer, who believes that Obama is a gay Muslim, said. “I doubt it will be heavy-handed in attacking the Obama administration or Mrs. Clinton directly.”

“I expect it to be a pretty good action movie. I expect realistic action and real drama,” he said before adding that he plans on seeing it this weekend.

Even Republican presidential frontrunners are excited to see what Bay and Jim from The Office have in store. Donald Trump, who has frequently slammed Hillary Clinton over Benghazi and her record as Secretary of State, said he’d like to see the movie if he has time during his presidential campaign.

“Somebody said it’s actually a fair depiction, which is interesting, but I would say I’d like to, if I find the time,” he recently told The Howie Carr Show.

Similarly, Ben Carson is hopeful that the movie could shed light on the truth of what happened on that fateful day.

“Dr. Carson has not seen Michael Bay’s new movie,” Carson’s spokeswoman Deana Bass said in an email to The Daily Beast. “However, he is definitely interested in the American people knowing the truth. If this movie raises awareness and sheds more light and attention on Benghazi then that's a positive.”

Carson maintains that the former Secretary of State lied about the attack in Libya.

In the meantime, critics of the Obama administration and Clinton will just have to buy a ticket, and hope for the best.

“Maybe the truth will be told!?” Glenn Beck, another celebrity Benghazi obsessive, wrote on his Facebook page after 13 Hours’ official trailer dropped this past summer.

Maybe, Glenn. Maybe.

Updated at 10:10 a.m. Jan. 14, 2016: A previous version of this piece misstated Tom Fitton’s position on a Benghazi kidnapping conspiracy theory. We regret the error.