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Rules of Engagement (2000)

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An attorney defends an officer on trial for ordering his troops to fire on civilians after they stormed a U.S. embassy in a Middle Eastern country.

Director:

William Friedkin

Writers:

Jim Webb (story) (as James Webb), Stephen Gaghan (screenplay)
1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tommy Lee Jones ... Colonel Hayes Hodges
Samuel L. Jackson ... Colonel Terry Childers
Guy Pearce ... Major Biggs
Ben Kingsley ... Mourain
Bruce Greenwood ... Sokal
Anne Archer ... Mrs. Mourain
Blair Underwood ... Captain Lee
Philip Baker Hall ... General H. Lawrence Hodges
Dale Dye ... General Perry
Amidou ... Doctor Ahmar
Mark Feuerstein ... Tom Chandler
Richard McGonagle ... Judge
Baoan Coleman Baoan Coleman ... Colonel Cao
Nicky Katt ... Hayes Hodges III
Ryan Hurst ... Corporal Hustings
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Storyline

Hayes Hodges finds his career aspirations dashed when he's wounded in Vietnam. He returns to America and becomes a disillusioned lawyer who goes up against the Service to defend Colonel Terry Childers, who is accused of inciting an incident that leaves many demonstrators dead. Hodges is in no position to decline: Childers saved his life in Vietnam. Written by Ronos

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A hero should never have to stand alone.

Genres:

Drama | Thriller | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for scenes of war violence, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | Germany | Canada | USA

Language:

English | Arabic

Release Date:

7 April 2000 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Reglas de combate See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$60,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$15,011,181, 9 April 2000

Gross USA:

$61,335,230

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$71,732,303
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When released in Spain, the movie title was literally translated resulting in "Reglas de compromiso". Engagement in English can be translated like in the original title as the behavior when two opposing forces come into contact or as near future wedding. Spanish language however uses different words for these two concepts, and the one referring to "wedding" was mistakenly used is the Spanish title creating a misleading title with no relation to the actual movie plot. See more »

Goofs

As Col. Childers gets out of his car to confront a man who spits on his uniform, many people in the crowd of reporters move positions between shots and a large boom microphone appears overhead. See more »

Quotes

Colonel Hayes Hodges: If this gets bad, it gets bad for both of us.
Colonel Terry L. Childers: Why, Hodge? Are you going to jail too?
See more »

Alternate Versions

Some international prints, made for DVD/TV broadcast, have removed the Paramount logo and fade straight into the Seven Arts Pictures logo. The opening titles also now read "Seven Arts Pictures Present in association with Paramount Pictures". This is due to the fact that Seven Arts owned the international rights and wanted prime credit. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Red Green Show: Rules of Engagement (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

On the Threshold of Liberty
by Mark Isham
Contains a sample performed by Mark Isham
Courtesy of The Windham Hill Group
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Insight and Drama
15 January 2003 | by adogg4629See all my reviews

Headed by two unnerving performances, this film takes us on a journey through the gray area that is our military morality today. We live in a society insulated from realistic depictions of war. We get censored CNN and FOX news. We rarely get anything insightful, so it is a pleasure to have HOLLYWOOD offer up one of the most moving anti-military films in the past ten years. While the courtroom drama is by all means standard, the most unique attention is paid to the changing perception of TLJ's character. In his journy to defend, he comes to an all too real understanding of a culture whose leaders have no problem sending our boys to die, yet they themselves are either ignorant of the reality, or to politically motivated to be moved by it. In conclusion, this is an alienating film because it presents an alien culture that lives by its own moral code. That alien culture isn't middle eastern... it is our own military.

One more point; Watching this film post 911 gives it an all too creepy reality.


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