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Four Lions (2010)

 -  Comedy | Crime | Drama  -  7 May 2010 (UK)
7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 47,289 users   Metascore: 68/100
Reviews: 146 user | 232 critic | 28 from Metacritic.com

Four incompetent British jihadists set out to train for and commit an act of terror.

Director:

(as Chris Morris)
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Title: Four Lions (2010)

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Won 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 7 wins & 21 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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...
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Waj
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Faisal
...
Craig Parkinson ...
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Wasim Zakir ...
Mohammad Aqil ...
Karl Seth ...
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Khalid (as Willliam El-Gardi)
...
Malcolm Storge MP (as Alex MacQueen)
Shameem Ahmad ...
Chairwoman
Jonathan Maitland ...
Newsreader (as Jonny Maitland)
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Storyline

Four Lions tells the story of a group of British jihadists who push their abstract dreams of glory to the breaking point. As the wheels fly off, and their competing ideologies clash, what emerges is an emotionally engaging (and entirely plausible) farce. In a storm of razor-sharp verbal jousting and large-scale set pieces, Four Lions is a comic tour de force; it shows that-while terrorism is about ideology-it can also be about idiots. Written by Sundance Film Festival

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language throughout, including some sexual references | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

|

Language:

| |

Release Date:

7 May 2010 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Cztery lwy  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$41,512 (USA) (5 November 2010)

Gross:

$304,137 (USA) (18 February 2011)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

, ,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Nigel Lindsay who plays Barry the Djihadi had actually played a Jewish extremist in HBO's Rome season 2(2007). See more »

Goofs

The "lions" travel to London to detonate their devices at the London Marathon. However, the streets clearly show signs for Sheffield traders - including many 0114 (Sheffield) telephone numbers. Additionally, the double decker buses are the wrong color. See more »

Quotes

Ahmed: Why not come to our study group, Omar?
Omar: What, and get a four-hour dose of that face? The floaty face of the wise bird, hovering on a million quotes, about to do a massive wisdom shit on my head.
See more »

Crazy Credits

One sheep was blown up in the making of this film See more »

Connections

References Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977) See more »

Soundtracks

Symphony No. 9 in E Minor, OP 95 'From The New World'
By Antonín Dvorák
Performed by Berliner Philharmoniker
Conducted by Herbert von Karajan
Courtesy of Deutsche Grammophone Gmbh under license from Universal Music Group
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A ludicrous pageant of ineptitude... a 'How-Not-To Guide' to martyrdom
16 May 2010 | by (Bristol, England) – See all my reviews

Like Charlie Chaplin's Hitler, Chris Morris' 'Four Lions' shows that no subject can escape comic scrutiny; humour always seems to find the ability to expose the ridiculous in otherwise appalling situations. This satirical black comedy vents its disgust at the pseudo-morality of suicide bombing, whilst managing to portray its terrorists with an affection that allows the audience an unexpected emotional attachment with these supposed figures of violence.

The film follows a terrorist cell of blundering, inept, and impossibly stupid would-be suicide bombers on their quest towards martyrdom – we follow them failing miserably in a Pakistan training camp, trying to run through sheep fields whilst carrying bags of explosives, attaching bombs to crows, all the time creating a chaotic 'blooper' reel of attempted martyrdom videos. These suicide bombers are not the feared assassins of popular imagination, but absurd and easily led dupes who encourage laughter and ridicule – and significantly, in the end, pity.

The comedy of 'Four Lions' lies in the power of its bathos: the film reduces the dreaded spectre of suicide bombing to a ludicrous pageant of ineptitude. It's a film with fast laughs and dim wit in abundance, an absurd 'How Not-To Guide' to martyrdom.

However, the audience cannot help but feel pity for the characters as their plot reaches its climax. There is a sad inevitability to the group's last moments together; despite the horror of what the bombers are planning, the audience has been lulled into sympathising with their situation. The sadness of the film comes with the audience's realisation that these characters are regular, likable, funny, naive people – they are not monsters in themselves, but made monstrous by their susceptibility to absurd, immoral teachings.

The lead character Omar's interactions with his wife and young son are painful in their twisted depiction of the ideal family unit. At one point Omar (played by Riz Ahmed) tells his son a bedtime story about 'Simba's Jihad'. It is a scene that is touching, funny and uncomfortable all at once, a reflection of our responses to the film as a whole.

'Four Lions' is provocative in its comic parody of an emotional subject, but there is never any sense that it wishes to be deliberately inflammatory. Instead, the story is told with warmth and sharp humour; it offers us a fine concoction of derision and sympathy, pulling at our affections whilst cutting the terrifying down to the clownish.

James Gill ------ Find more reviews, news and previews at www.singleadmission.co.uk


122 of 138 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Greatest one liner in movie history: timhall989
Terrible 1/10 centurion1986
Was Omar a moral person? purrshaped
How on Earth can anybody NOT find this hilarious? MCShaghard
We shot the right man, but the wrong man blew himself up wcpeezy12
Anyone from Sheffield? ousside
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