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Tears Of The Sun

movie reviewmovie review out of 4 Movie Review: Tears Of The Sun

Starring: Bruce Willis, Monica Bellucci
Director: Antoine Fuqua
Rated: R
RunTime: 121 Minutes
Release Date: March 2003
Genres: Action, Suspense

Review by Susan Granger
2 stars out of 4

Given the current geo-political tensions, the timing's right for this heroic military action thriller in which Bruce Willis, as Lieut. A.K. Waters, leads a team of Navy SEALS on a compassionate mission-of-mercy through the Nigerian jungle when the democratic government collapses and the country is taken over by rebel forces of a ruthless military dictator. His orders are to evacuate Dr. Lena Kendricks (Monica Belluci) of Doctors Without Borders, along with a priest and two nuns, who are trapped at a remote Catholic mission. She refuses to go unless Waters will agree to escort their sick, stranded villagers on a perilous trek to political asylum in Cameroon, away from the graphic suffering and atrocities of ethnic cleansing. But Waters' captain (Tom Skerritt) has ordered him to stay disengaged from the conflict and, unbeknownst to him, one of the refugees is the sole survivor of the previous President's family. That's why a determined band of guerillas is in murderous pursuit. Written by Patrick Cirillo and Alex Lasker, the story struggles with the moral question of America's role as the world's police force, a dilemma made abundantly clear when a black SEAL (Eamonn Walker) declares, "those Africans are my people, too." Despite an abundance of platitudes, director Antoine Fuqua ("Training Day") keeps the tension taut although he devotes a disconcerting number of shots to Ms. Belluci's unbuttoned cleavage. And the propaganda concept is eerily reminiscent of John Wayne's "The Green Berets," released at the time of the unpopular Vietnam conflict. On the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, "Tears of the Sun" is a soggy, brutal 5, ending with Edmund Burke's quote: "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing."

Copyright 2003 Susan Granger

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