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No Man's Land
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No Man's Land More at IMDbPro »

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0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Satire in the style of 'Wag the Dog'

Author: rbverhoef ( from The Hague, Netherlands
16 October 2004

'No Man's Land' is the film that unexpectedly took home the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film; most people thought it would go to the French 'Amélie'. The reason this did not happen has probably to do with the themes of both movies. 'Amélie' is a modern fairy tale about little things that make people happy, about love, about something we see in a lot of films. (Although almost never as good as in 'Amélie'.) 'No Man's Land' is a movie about the former-Yugoslavian conflict. It is a movie like 'Wag the Dog'. Both movies are about something that could happen, shown in an exaggerated story to make it a satire.

Both movies are equally entertaining, sad in different ways. 'No Man's Land' starts with a group of Bosnian soldiers. It is the middle of the night and the fog is the reason they have no idea where they are. Daytime. The men are between the Bosnian and Serbian frontline, not a hard target for the Serbs. The Bosnian soldiers are all killed but one, Ciki (Branko Djuric).He ends up in a trench in no man's land. The Serbs send two soldiers to check the situation. They arrive in the trench, put a mine underneath a dead Bosnian body (a surprise for those who will pick him up) and find out that there is a Bosnian survivor. One of the two Serbs is killed by Ciki, the other wounded. His name is Nino (Rene Bitorajac). Now both men are in the trench in no man's land, both men want to get out alive.

In a Hollywood film the two would become friends I guess. 'The Iron Triangle', set in the Vietnam-war, comes to mind. This is not what happens here. First the dead Bosnian on the mine turns out not to be dead at all. Cera (Filip Sovagovic) is his name. The three come up with a plan to get all out alive. This leads up to the arrival of the UN, a French delegation. They are ordered to leave the field by their superior (Simon Callow). A British news reporter (Katrin Cartlidge) catches that conversation and threatens the French UN soldiers to transmit this. This makes sure the UN has to do something. In the meanwhile the conflict in the trench is not over.

I must say no more about the story. Basically it is there to support the satire. The two men in the trench show us with their dialogue how both parties look at the conflict, we see how little the UN can do, we see how things always change into a media circus. The ending is the most like 'Wag the Dog', showing how the media and the world can be mislead by powerful people. Maybe the event in this movie is implausible, but I believe there are stories like this one that really did take place. 'No Man's Land' is a good movie and works as a satire, but it is no 'Amélie' that shows us the most important thins: love!

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0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:


Author: lilkbraptor15
20 August 2003

I am Croatian and seeing this movie in my language is absolutely hilarious...Forget English subtitles..they don't even translate right...a must see for anyone who speaks the language 8/10

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0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Not bad

Author: Lucas de Noir from Stockholm, Sweden
4 March 2002

No man's land is a very good black allegory about the bosnian war. It sometimes too simple and trivializing, but pretty good on the whole.

Good directing and good cast. Kusturicas Underground is still much better.

The cast was good and the directing too (although very hollywood - clever cuts and so on).

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0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:


Author: Matija Trost from Ljubljana, Slovenija
22 February 2002

...made about the war in former Yugoslavia.

Sure, the script is great, the acting of two leading performers is on the level too and there is a bunch of black humor in there. So what's missing to beat a legendary "Lepa sela, lepo gore"?

Hmmm, for my taste it's just too...simple. Not exceptional (except the last shot of the "dead man" lying).

Although, there were some better movies taped in the past few years in the region of the former YU (heh, it's still gives me a chill, when i think about Serbian movie "Rane", probably the best movie made in these years. Or maybe ever.), No mans land still deserves some attention.

7 out of 10

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0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

A good movie, but nothing special

Author: bsinc from Ljubljana, Slovenia
12 February 2002

Everybody has been praising this movie since it came out, but I find it to be rather mediocre. Nothing new (maybe the fact that the war was going on in , nothing breathtaking (except maybe for the ending when the Bosnian soldier is left to die). A movie made to please the audience, especially foreign, which in some cases don't quite know the whole truth. If you want a real portrait of atmosphere and life during the war go rent a movie called Rane. Now that's a shocker.

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0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

The struggle in the former Yugoslavia in 1993 never looked clearer or more devastating than in this little morality play of a movie.

Author: jdesando from United States
7 February 2002

The struggle in the former Yugoslavia in 1993 never looked clearer or more devastating than in this little morality play of a movie called `No Man's Land.' Serbs and Croats find themselves caught in a dilemma-a soldier lies on a bouncing bomb; when he moves, it will explode. In comes the UN to attempt to rescue everyone, spouting inanities about the peace process when peace is an absurdity put in relief by the current puzzle.

The press is mercilessly savaged for being as self-serving as the warring factions. When the reporter asks, while the camera whirs away, how one of the 3 soldiers in the booby-trapped trench feels, he gives her a raised digit. It's a mild rebuke considering she just exclaimed about the absurdity of war.

Cinematography and set design are subdued. For a film, it is surprisingly stagy, yet that effect heightens the real war of ideas like who started it all and who cares about just one man. The doomed soldier holds a family photo unaware that to do so in the movies is to invite danger. It's funny and harrowing at the same time.

`No Man's Land' is closer to `Three Kings' than it is to `Waiting for Godot' because its humor is purposely gallows-like and less existential. Yet when the camera pulls away at the end, you can be sure you have just watched the best film of the absurd for the 21st century. `Behind Enemy Lines' or even `M*A*S*H pale next to this Cannes winner for best screenplay.

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0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

A Paths of Glory for the Serbian war

Author: otis von zipper from San Francisco
14 January 2002

With just a few characters and very few moments of shooting or battle, No Man's Land depicts the human toll caused by war. It's not just lives that are lost, but truly our humanity. The struggle is represented by two soldiers trapped between lines desperate to return to their respective sides. At times they are civil to one another, but the history of conflict continues to get between them. Governmental and bureaucratic forces work only to further dehumanize the individuals, even when operating with good intentions. The main theme would have to be the need for the individual to do the right thing, and it's final shot is an inspired and haunting image. Of the films I've seen lately, this is by far one of the best.

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0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

The best film about the war in BiH - no doubt.

Author: adisa from Sarajevo
26 December 2001

I strongly believe that this is the best film ever made about the war in BiH. I've been there and I've seen it. It is also, from my point of view, the most difficult film, because it is so realistic. I loved the humor, for it shows us - all the Bosnians - as we really are. We use that language and we do talk like that most of the time, particularly in difficult moments. However, I wish I did not see the "live news" part. It brought bad memories and it made me cry. But, without it, the film would not be complete. The presentation of UNPROFOR and media was accurate. As the matter of fact, everything was accurate. The soldiers who were there without knowing the real reason, their understanding and mixed feelings about each other, the actions (or lack of it) of UNPROFOR and journalists... And the last scene... Bosnia as it really is.

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0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Very Touching

Author: mavisheh from United States
16 October 2001

I watched No Man's Land at the Chicago Int'l Film Festival this year and truly enjoyed it.

A war movie that tells the absurdity and uselessness of war, the frustration of the parties involved, and the chaos of outside help and the media, without using cliche scenes of blood sheds and fightings.

The scene where the Bosnian and the Serb soldiers debate about who started the war and the very last scene are extremely strong.

The Bosnian soldier laying on the mine, symbolizes the situation and destiny of the "people" and the "country" very touchingly.

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1 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Masterpice in every way!

Author: petarmatic from Sarajevo B&H
12 October 2013

This the only movie I will rate 10 out of 10. Why you will ask yourselves? It is simple. I had the same idea, and if I became a movie director I would of made that film.

I knew Danis Tanovic since we were teenagers. He is a great person in every sense! A real gem of this world, rare to find in this dangerous world of ours. Since the war came to our unfortunate land I came up with the idea for this film and idea for a movie that later became Circus Columbia. I told Danis if we are to survive the war he or I will make those films. He went on to be successful movie director and I well, film critic on I did not think that Danis was to succeed. There was so much going against him. Serbs wanted to get a piece of his Muslim butt, like all Muslims he was a target to be executed when captured by the remnants of the Yugoslav Army which quickly turned into Serb Army. Luckily that did not happen, Serbs failed to kill or chase out of Bosnia-Herzegovina all Muslims and Croats they wanted to. And look at him, Danis is an Oscar winning movie director! What to say but congratulations and felicitations!

The film is perfect in every sense, a true anti war film. It makes you wish that people should not wage war on each other, but it seems impossible wish. The only way to experience that masterpiece is to watch the film yourselves. Pleaase make your lazy Anglo-Saxon butts read and understand the dialog. It really is a gem! And if you want to find that no mans land in the real life take a drive between Trebinje, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Dubrovnik, Croatia. It is a true no mans land!

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