6.7/10
24,993
118 user 190 critic

A Mighty Heart (2007)

Mariane Pearl embarks on a frantic search to locate her journalist husband, Daniel, when he goes missing in Pakistan.

Writers:

(screenplay), (book)

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 4 wins & 17 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Mohammed Afzal ...
Shabbir
...
Danny's Taxi Driver (as Mushtaq Ahmed)
Daud Khan ...
Masud the Fixer
Telal Saeed ...
Kaleem Yusuf
Arif Khan ...
Mariane's Taxi Driver
Tipu Taheer ...
Human Rights Director
Amit Dhawan ...
Technical Supervisor
Saira Nasir Khan ...
Nasrin
Aliya Khan ...
Kashva
Sarah Mone ...
Female Guest
Bushra Parwani ...
Female Guest
Zafar Karachiwala ...
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Storyline

On January 23, 2002, Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl is to fly from Karachi to Dubai with his pregnant wife, Mariane, also a reporter. On the day before, with great care, he has arranged an interview in a café with an Islamic fundamentalist cleric. When Danny doesn't return, Mariane initiates a search. Pakistani police, American embassy personnel, and the FBI examine witnesses, phone records, e-mails, and hard drives. Who has him? Where is he? There's also the why: because of U.S. abuse of prisoners at Guantanamo, because of a history of Journal cooperation with the CIA, because Pearl is a Jew? Through it all, Mariane is clearheaded, direct, and determined. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It was an event that shocked the world. This is the story you haven't heard. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

22 June 2007 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Un coeur invaincu  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$16,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$3,948,863 (USA) (24 June 2007)

Gross:

$9,176,787 (USA) (23 August 2007)
 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After Angelina Jolie was cast as Mariane Pearl, she and the filmmakers came in for a great deal of criticism, since Pearl's and Jolie's racial backgrounds are not similar, and Jolie played the role wearing makeup that somewhat darkened her own skin tone. The casting reminded many critics of the time in Hollywood when it was customary to cast "ethnic" roles with white actors in makeup rather than using black, Asian, or Native American actors. During a promotional press event for the movie, Jolie responded to the criticisms by saying, "the idea is, if you ask Marianne, because she did address that... if you did actually want to find somebody that was her exact makeup, she's actually majority Dutch, and she's as black as she is Chinese, and she's Cuban, and she's French. So, it could have gone to many different racial backgrounds, probably, if you went technical on it." Pearl herself approved of casting Jolie; in Time Magazine, Pearl said, "I have heard some criticism about her casting, but it is not about the color of your skin. It is about who you are. I asked her to play the role - even though she is way more beautiful than I am - because I felt a real kinship to her." See more »

Goofs

Since a lot of the movie was shot in Pune and Mumbai, a lot of scenes actually show taxis and roads of Mumbai and Pune. Though most cars in focus have the numbers changed, yet Fiat taxi's and trucks with Indian number plates are all over the place. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Mariane Pearl: [narrating] The day after 9-11, Danny and I flew to Pakistan. He was the South Asia Bureau Chief for the Wall Street Journal, and I was working for French Public Radio. Thousands of journalist from all over the world arrived in Islamabad to cover the war in neighboring Afghanistan. On the 7th October, bombing began.
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Connections

Referenced in Locked Up Abroad: India: Hostage to Terror (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Le Gayi
(Yashirai)
(p) and (c) Saregama India Ltd
Courtesy of Saregama India Ltd
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User Reviews

 
Respectful Treatment Of A Tragedy
20 September 2008 | by (Durham Region, Ontario, Canada) – See all my reviews

Essentially what we have here is a pretty well done, seemingly step by step account of the investigation into the kidnapping of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl in 2002, which of course ended with his tragic murder. It is not without weaknesses. Primarily, watching close to two hours about an investigation that doesn't seem to be going anywhere and eventually accomplishes nothing gets a bit dry after a while - especially because we know how this is going to end. There comes a point when you just want to fast forward through it to the end. Having said that, the strengths definitely outweigh the weaknesses.

Director Michael Winterbottom does a pretty good job of establishing atmosphere. From the very beginning, the chaotic nature of Karachi sets a foreboding tone to the movie, and, although I sometimes find archival footage in movies to be of little use, in "A Mighty Heart" I thought Winterbottom did a pretty good job of blending the archival stuff (particularly clips of Colin Powell and Pervez Musharaff) into the story. Throughout the movie the viewer wonders how Pearl's murder is going to be portrayed, and, again, kudos to Winterbottom. In fact, and thankfully, the murder isn't portrayed at all. What we see are the reactions of those who see the video for the first time and their reactions to the ghastly scene on the tape is sufficient to establish what happened. There was (to me at least) an interesting scene that lasted only a couple of minutes dealing with a typical "ugly American" female FBI agent, who bursts into the Pearl home, ignores the Pakistani authorities, tries to take charge and orders the room "cleared" because she gets a phone call she wants no one else to hear. She disappears immediately after this scene and was never seen again. I just for some reason found it rather typical of how I would expect U.S. authorities to act in a foreign country, and her portrayal was, of course, balanced by the very sympathetic portrayal of the kindhearted Randall Bennett (Will Randall) - an official from the U.S. Embassy who provides great support to Mariane Pearl.

Angelina Jolie was, I understand, a bit of a controversial choice for the part (largely for ethnic reasons) but she put on an excellent performance as Mariane, hopelessly lost in the situation, pregnant with Daniel's baby and totally dependent on others to try to save her husband. Her reaction to the news of Daniel's death was raw with emotion. Ethnic controversy aside, no one can deny that Jolie was superb in this role. Her performance and Winterbottom's direction make the movie worthwhile. 8/10


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