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|Index||162 reviews in total|
This was a fantastic film. I admit to being slightly hesitant about the sub-titles but I'm glad I didn't let it put me off. I'd heard good things about this film and they are all true. This film is a must see for anyone who is interested in a new perspective on war, racial divisions and the futility of hate. My vote - another strong 8/10
One of the most unique looks at war the cinema has ever produced.
While I enjoy the likes of "Full Metal Jacket" "Platoon"..."Searching for Private" et. al....they showed the physical, blown-out pictures of combat... then "Wag the Dog"...hysterically protrayed... "No Man's Land" gave the war an intimate look... an individual look...It also told the UN story in a different (and I think, sadly true) way.
An excellent film. No other film I've ever seen so perfectly mixes
humour and tragedy.
What's more, this film isn't for a moment melodramatic or forced. The actors are perfect - and this film has a bullsh** factor of zero.
From my admittedly limited knowledge of the Balkan wars, the story seems to be told from a neutral standpoint, though I don't think any of the actors, writers etc. were Serb.
Funniest scene: A Bosnian soldier is bored on the lines, reading a newspaper. He's very disturbed to read about what's happening in Rwanda .... pretty hilarious reaction from his comrade, lol.
In sum, this is a really well-made film, that manages to tell a story about this horrible war that is at times really funny, and never once becomes melodramatic. Thankfully, it is the antithesis to the Hollywood war epic.
In a trench in Bosnia-Herzegovina, two Serbs are looking for Bosnian
soldiers. They find one of them apparently dead, and one of the Serbs puts a
fragmentation mine under his body. Ciki (Branko Djuric), another Bosnian
soldier hidden in the trench, shoots at them. In the end, the apparently
dead Bosnian soldier Cera (Filip Sovagovic) is indeed alive with a mine
under his body, and Bosnian Ciki and the Serb Nino (Rene Bitorajac) are hurt
and equally armed in an even situation. They decide to ask for help in a
very peculiar way. The French UN soldier Marchand (Georges Siatidis) tries
to help the men and disobeys his superiors order, using the journalist Jane
Livingstone (Katrin Cartlidge) as a kind of scapegoat in a very uncommon
situation. In the end, a circus is armed in the trench and nothing is
resolved. Yesterday, I saw this excellent movie for the third time. In a
surrealistic situation, the director Danis Tanovic offers the universe of
this insane war using a few characters. It is very metaphoric and has a kind
of black humor. We have two Bosnians and two Serbs, one of them having the
sick idea of mining a dead body. The rage among the three survivors
alternates with some dialogs about a common friend and who initiated the
war. Indeed, they do not clearly know why they are fighting against each
other, and the other soldiers are unable to identify who is who without
wearing uniforms. The ridiculous, bureaucratic and hypocrite role of the UN
in this war is explicitly demonstrated. Maybe this is the unique film that
really touches the wound relative to the performance of UN in this war. The
idealist soldier is unable to help whom needs and feels very frustrated when
the situation is ended. The journalists trying to obtain a matter, but not
taking care in investigating `the trench' a little further after achieving
their objectives. `No Man's Land' is another excellent movie about the
Bosnian war, inclusive an Oscar winner for Best Foreign Language Film in
2001, and highly recommended for any audience. If the reader likes this
theme, I would like to suggest the excellent `Harrison's Flowers',
`Vukovar', `Pretty Village, Pretty Flame', `Shot Through the Heart',
`Welcome to Sarajevo' and `Savior'. My vote is nine.
Title (Brazil): `Terra de Ninguém' (`No Man's Land')
The actors did a phenomenal job!!!! Well written too! This movie didn't wrench my heart out, until the very last scene and the song begins...wow! Between the visual reality of the scene and the song "Nine sine, spavaj sine" by Alma Bandit...it is just incredible! Ajlina at beachbelle dot com
No Man's Land offers an excellent metaphor for the situation that leads
to war: there is a man in the film who is lying on top of a mine that
will destroy everything in the area if his weight is removed. In spite
of all the help that is offered to the man there is really nothing that
can be done; even the experts are unable provide a solution. Without
knowing a great deal about the military conflict this scenario is a
part of I think it's safe to say that the situation the armies are
battling over is no less complicated. It's apparently far too
complicated for the soldiers to understand. When two opposing soldiers
discuss the causes of the war neither can pinpoint when or how the war
started. In fact each man gives the same reason for his own involvement
in the conflict: they joined up because the other side was destroying
villages in their home areas.
These two opposing soldiers have a very complex relationship. Each proves unwilling to murder an unarmed man in close quarters. Through some complicated maneuvering each man is put in a position to have mercy on the other. For a short time they are able to get along; they even realize they have a mutual acquaintance from before the war. Nonetheless, in the course of trying to resolve the mine situation the two come to desire the death of one another; if the man on the mine is a metaphor for the nation's problems then the attempts of these men to resolve the situation becomes a metaphor for the war itself. Of course, if each man just tried to understand the other's situation their own conflict could have been avoided.
The film's other concern is the outside world's involvement in the conflict. We see UN forces that are mostly well meaning but clueless to even the most basic issues involved; they don't even have a person who can speak the language of the soldiers. The media is no better: we see a journalist who only cares about having a good story. She is completely indifferent to the people involved beyond what they can do for her; this is shown clearly in her attempt to interview one of the three men. Her third question is, "Did you place the mine under the other soldier?" which shows how ready she is to place the blame on one person or another instead of understanding both sides. The soldier's contemptuous answer is thus well deserved. After this reporter gets the dramatic bloodshed she wants she is willing to believe any excuse that will allow her to get back to a safe area; indeed she doesn't want to look at the trench where the man has been trapped anymore than she would have wanted to visit the country if there was no war.
The premise of 'No Man's Land' is simple: enemy soldiers stuck inside the same trench beneath their opposing lines. The setting is the Bosnian war, and the start of the film is vaguely reminiscent of the films of Emir Kusturica: less wild, but raw and to the point: I believed in the characters. But in the second half of the film, the movie turns it's attention from Serbs and Bosnians to the French and the British; and here I found it less successful. And this is not because western Europeans deserve no censure: in the real war, the U.N. did indeed stand aside while the massacre at Srebenica took place. But the pantomime general on display here does not help us understand how that happened; and the journalist is also an uncomfortable character. Put simply, the way that she reports the news, both inane and emotional, simply isn't how news is done in the real world. T.V. news reporting can be parodied - Chris Morris, among others, has done so superbly in the past - but mimicry is perhaps a prerequisite of good parody: the ability to replicate the tone is what buys the freedom to exaggerate. Although 'Welcome to Serejevo' was perhaps overly sympathetic to its journalistic protagonist, I felt it captured more of the essence of the truth of being a war reporter than this film. And after finding 'No Man's Land's portrayals of its English characters unconvincing, do I then have to ask myself, should I trust its portrayals of its Balkan protagonists? Even the film's final message seems confused, for having mocked the U.N. for not intervening, when it does intervene, things end in inevitable disaster, meaning that that paradoxically, it could almost be seen as an unintentional endorsement of realpolitik. I still enjoyed watching this movie; but its psychology is definitely stronger than its politics.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This was the movie that I wanted to see because it had won the 2001
Best Oscar for Foreign Language Film during the same year an Indian
movie called Lagaan was the top contender for the Oscars. Fortunately I
got to see this movie after a period of six years.
The story is about the war between Serbia and Bosnia. Three soldiers are caught 2 Bosnians Muslims and one Serb in a no-man's land patch. All are injured and one Bosnian soldier is laid on a live land mine. UN comes to help, the TV and media land up, the Bosnian and Serbian soldier die and the one of the land mine is left to die by UN because there is no way to rescue him.
It is a deeply moving story and a good exposure to the war in general. It has human drama, of hate between human beings who are no different and not born to hate and kill each other. Both Serbian and Bosnian soldiers blame each other of starting the war. But the main villains of the story emerge out to be the pathetic bureaucracy of UN Peace Keeping Force, and the media who are waiting as vultures.
The first time Director of a full length feature film - Danis Tanovic, does a good job in covering gamut of issues surrounding the Serb and Bosnia war. He shows guts in exposing the ineffective UN machinery. Danis worked for 2 years on the war zone, and his experience helped in making the fictional movie very authentic in looks.
The three main stars Branko Djuric as Bosnian Ciki, Rene Bitorajac as Serb Nino and Filip Sovagovic as Bosnian Cera (lying down on the live land mine) do a marvelous job in acting. The emotions and feelings are showcased raw.
The musical score is minimal but the beginning and ending title music is haunting. Did this movie deserve an Oscar above Lagaan? Was Lagaan a better movie than No Man's Land? It must have had been a tough call for the Oscar panel to choose between Lagaan and No Man's Land. Lagaan was a wholesome Indian entertainer. It has music, emotions, human triumph, joy, celebrations, contest, good bad, morals and a happy ending feeling. Whereas No Man's Landing was more contemporary more western in its images, more relevant to the war debates of US. I think the panel must have related to No Man's Land much more than Lagaan.
Surely if the panel of Oscar was universal Lagaan would have bagged the Oscars. But America rules they decide the panel and they award a movie. It remains a posterior history now! (Stars 7 out of 10)
One of the most eerie resolutions to a film that I've ever seen. This film
is more than just one of the only depictions of the Bosnian/Serbian
struggle: this movie is about the selfishness of humanity. It takes a dive
into the upheaval of indifference, and reveals the true childishness of
This was very well written, with dramatic elements as well as stark wit. This is more than a dark comedy, but a realistic depiction. I guess life is often dark and amusing, I don't know. Anyway, it's one of the best scripts of the year, that's for sure. The photography is always fluid, but very slow; which, in a way, fits the stories tempo. I loved the acting and i loved how terrible the ending was. (storywise, i'm not badmouthing the movies chosen ending.)
More people need to see this film, as it was quite under-rated. One of the best films of 2001, amidst many good films.
For people who want to see in a film more than a bad boy with a gun and
attitude, or "I love her, and she loves a bad guy, but I win at the end, a
part XVII, specially customized for teenagers" story.
I give it 10 of 10, for presenting a nice and funny way very serious
such as a role of UN in the world today, and job description of UN
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