418 user 131 critic

Behind Enemy Lines (2001)

A Navy navigator is shot down over enemy territory and is ruthlessly pursued by a secret police enforcer and the opposing troops. Meanwhile his commanding officer goes against orders in an attempt to rescue him.



(story) (as James Thomas), (story) | 2 more credits »
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1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Piquet (as Joaquim De Almeida)
Petty Officer Kennedy
Admiral Donnelly
Aernout Van Lynden ...
Aernout Van Lynden
Red Crown Operator #1
Red Crown Operator #2 (as Shane Mikael Johnson)
Don Winston ...
Red Crown Operator #3


Fighter navigator Chris Burnett wants out: he was looking for something more than the boring recon missions he's been flying. He finds himself flying the lone Christmas day mission over war-torn Bosnia. But when he talks pilot Stackhouse into flying slightly off-course to check out an interesting target, the two get shot down. Burnett is soon alone, trying to outrun a pursuing army, while commanding officer Reigert finds his rescue operation hamstrung by politics, forcing Burnett to run far out of his way. Written by Jon Reeves <jreeves@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


In War There Are Some Lines You Should Never Cross. See more »


Action | Drama | Thriller | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for war violence and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:


Release Date:

30 November 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Im Fadenkreuz - Allein gegen alle  »


Box Office


$40,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$18,736,133, 2 December 2001, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$59,068,786, 21 April 2002

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$91,753,222, 31 December 2001
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


Owen Wilson went through some actual naval survival training to prepare for the role. See more »


The PA system on the US Navy cruiser announces an EDT of "2130 this evening." No sailor past his second week in boot camp would have said that. See more »


Admiral Reigart: [talking to Burnett on the radio] Burnett!
Admiral Reigart: Zero-six, you've been shot down, life is tough. You're a combat aviator, start acting like one. Remember your training, put some angles between you and your pursuers. Evade and survive, and we will bring you home. You got that? We will bring you home.
See more »


Referenced in Vsechnopárty: Episode dated 25 November 2008 (2008) See more »


Deck the Halls
Arranged and Performed by Johnny Reno
Courtesy of June St. Entertainment/Menthol Records
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Great sets and good suspense and action make for a worthy viewing
22 June 2003 | by See all my reviews

I enjoyed this film. It was a great mix of action and suspense, with some very realistic cinematography.

Basic plot - the Bosnian War is coming to an end, and from a US Navy carrier in the Adriatic, Owen Wilson and his pilot fly out on the last recon mission of the war, but are taken down by a surface-to-air missile. The rest of the film is about Wilson trying to get rescued while he is chased down psycho-genocidal Bosnian Serbs. You see, Wilson's plane took pictures of something the Serbs didn't want seeing.

The film is augmented by some superb cinematography, and very realistic sets, which really capture the cold and miserable setting in which the story is depicted.

I have to admit that Owen Wilson was an odd casting for the role, but he surprised me by not grossly annoying me too much, and seems to carry the serious role pretty well.

Gene Hackman carries well the role of the Admiral, frustrated when attempts to rescue Wilson are blocked by his NATO-command boss over "political-sensitivities".

The Serbs, particularly the psycho paramilitary guy in the tracksuit, are nasty, efficient and ruthless, and whilst I've noticed some criticism of this film for it being jingoistic and anti-Serb, one has to question whether this depiction *was* inaccurate or not... From what I recall the Bosnian Serb military were not nice people, and this film reminding us of that, I believe, is a perfectly valid point.

There is a lack of realism at times in the film, especially toward the end, where Wilson seems to dodge a million bullets emerging from an entire brigade, including armour vehicles etc., but don't let this detract. It's definitely worth a view.

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