Oscar contenders Argo and Zero Dark Thirty tell stories about America's efforts to redeem its prestige in a part of the world crippled by religious fervor and a hatred of the west, but they fail to take into account an underlying cultural revolution in the Middle East, a journalism professor at the University of Colorado-Boulder writes in today's (Wednesday) edition of Britain's Guardian newspaper. Nabil Echchaibi, who is also an associate director of the Center for Media, Religion and Culture at UC-Boulder, makes the case that ZD30 director Kathryn Bigelow only appears interested in a revenge story. ... It aggrandizes violence as a fantastical restoration of American pride. And while Argo may suggest the futility of violence it depicts Iran as dogged by religious fanaticism. He notes that Tehran's peaceful protests of 2009 did not spring from a vacuum but from a generation of Iranians who don't share their leaders' narrow agendas.