I saw “Zero Dark Thirty,” and enjoyed it. It said it was based on a true story. I knew that meant it was dramatized history, but I expected the history not to be needlessly distorted. In particular, the film showed a prisoner who had apparently soiled himself being hung by his hands in a bare...

I saw “Zero Dark Thirty,” and enjoyed it. It said it was based on a true story. I knew that meant it was dramatized history, but I expected the history not to be needlessly distorted. In particular, the film showed a prisoner who had apparently soiled himself being hung by his hands in a bare concrete room. He is waterboarded, deprived of sleep and water, made to wear a dog collar, grovel on the floor and stuffed into a box uncomfortably small. Because I knew there had been waterboarding and such things, I assumed that when the movie showed these working–producing information that helped lead to Osama bin Laden–that this is what had happened. In other words, that torture worked.

Now we have politicians, including one who was tortured in Hanoi, saying that this was not true and that the torture scenes are “grossly inaccurate.” Intelligence people are saying the same. One of the answers in reply to this, from Sen. Saxby Chambliss of Georgia, and ranking Republican on the Senate Intelligence Committee, is that this is just a movie. “It’s entertainment, not a documentary,” he said to the Los Angeles Times. “What’s next, a Senate inquiry on the Bourne trilogy or ‘24’?”