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Black Hawk Down (2001)

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160 elite U.S. soldiers drop into Somalia to capture two top lieutenants of a renegade warlord and find themselves in a desperate battle with a large force of heavily-armed Somalis.

Director:

Ridley Scott

Writers:

Mark Bowden (book), Ken Nolan (screenplay)
Popularity
666 ( 171)
Won 2 Oscars. Another 9 wins & 37 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Josh Hartnett ... Eversmann
Ewan McGregor ... Grimes
Tom Sizemore ... McKnight
Eric Bana ... Hoot
William Fichtner ... Sanderson
Ewen Bremner ... Nelson
Sam Shepard ... Garrison
Gabriel Casseus ... Kurth
Kim Coates ... Wex
Hugh Dancy ... Schmid
Ron Eldard ... Durant
Ioan Gruffudd ... Beales
Tom Guiry ... Yurek (as Thomas Guiry)
Charlie Hofheimer ... Smith
Danny Hoch ... Pilla
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Storyline

Action/war drama based on the best-selling book detailing a near-disastrous mission in Somalia on October 3, 1993. On this date nearly 100 U.S. Army Rangers, commanded by Capt. Mike Steele, were dropped by helicopter deep into the capital city of Mogadishu to capture two top lieutenants of a Somali warlord. This led to a large and drawn-out firefight between the Army Ranges, US Special Forces, and hundreds of Somali gunmen; resulting in the destruction of two U.S. Black Hawk helicopters. The film focuses on the heroic efforts of various Rangers to get to the downed black hawks, centering on SSG Eversmann, leading the Ranger unit Chalk Four to the first black hawk crash site, Chief Warrant Officer Durant who was captured after being the only survivor of the second black hawk crash, as well as many others who were involved. Written by Matthew Patay: revised by Corbin L.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Leave No Man Behind. See more »

Genres:

Drama | History | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for intense, realistic, graphic war violence, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site

Country:

USA | UK

Language:

English | Somali | Arabic

Release Date:

18 January 2002 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Black Hawk Down See more »

Filming Locations:

Morocco See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$92,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$179,823, 30 December 2001

Gross USA:

$108,638,745

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$172,989,651
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (extended)

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS (8 channels)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

On the last day of their week-long Army Ranger orientation at Fort Benning, the actors who played the Rangers received a letter that had been anonymously slipped under their door. The letter thanked them for all their hard work, and asked them to "tell our story true", signed with the names of the Rangers who died in the Mogadishu firefight. See more »

Goofs

Todd Blackburn is incorrectly depicted by both the film and the book as being the newest member of B Company 3/75 Ranger at the age of 18 just prior to the 'Black Hawk Down' incident. However, both the film and book are factually incorrect, with the book stating he had not yet even attended Ranger School. PFC Blackburn was actually one of the more senior Rangers in his company, being three weeks shy of his 20th birthday at the time of the raid (squarely at the average age of the other men in B Company). Due to the Traumatic Brain Injury he sustained in the fall, he has no recollection of events, or what may have caused his fall; while the pilot dodging an RPG as suggested by the film (but not the book) is a possibility, it is unsubstantiated and no other Ranger had difficulty while rappelling. Sgt. Eversmann was unaware Blackburn had fallen until he had completed his fast rope descent. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Dan Busch: There. Technicals, nine o'clock.
See more »

Crazy Credits

There are no studio logos at the beginning and the only opening credit is the title. See more »

Alternate Versions

A longer version of the scene where Sanderson inspects Grime's foot was filmed, but cut. Sanderson finds a piece of shrapnel lodged in Grime's foot, but he didn't feel it cause it cauterized on impact. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Taken: S.E.R.E. (2018) See more »

Soundtracks

Barra Barra
Written by Rachid Taha and Steve Hillage
Performed by Rachid Taha
Courtesy of Mondo Melodia/Barclay
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
I Felt Like I Was in that Black Hawk
18 January 2002 | by ptheusSee all my reviews

Black Hawk is quite simply the best movie of the year (2001) and the best war movie I have seen. It's an astonishing achievement that puts you right in the middle of the hellish horror faced by U.S. soldiers in Somalia in 1993. Every explosion startled me and filled me fear, every gunshot felt like it was whizzing right by me, every mistake or unforeseen event had me on the edge of my seat with stress and anger. I felt as though I had been transported to Mogadishu for 2.5 hours and plopped in the middle of the ambush faced by the 100 or so U.S. Rangers and Delta Force Troops as they set about to capture a Somalian warlord responsible for stealing Red Cross food shipments in his starvation-ravaged country. I really felt this movie, it was tangible to me; the confusion, the fear, the sense of dislocation and horror the soldiers must have faced. At the end I was emotionally and mentally drained.

Ahh emotions, a subject of much debate where this movie is concerned, at least among some critics. While the reviews for Black Hawk Down have on average ranged from "Good to Excellent," there has been persistent and growing criticism over the lack of clearly drawn out characters that the audience could connect with, the lack of historical context, and the fact that movie is all action, with no heart, with no point-of-view. Well I think those who criticize the movie on these grounds, have completely missed the point of the movie, and are flat-out wrong. It is a movie told from the soldiers point-of-view, pure and simple. This is not a political movie, this is not a movie that needs cheap sentimentality or conventional emotional "hooks" for the characters. As much as I liked Saving Private Ryan, the overly sentimental framing device used by Spielberg, really annoyed me. It felt like he was pandering to the audience just a little bit, and it wasn't necessary. Well, there's no pandering here, no cheap sentimentality in Black Hawk Down, just the horrible, gruesome, disorienting reality of modern combat. I didn't know anyone who worked in the World Trade Center, but I was moved to tears by what happened to them on Sept. 11 and that's the way I felt today in the movie.

As far as I am concerned there was plenty of emotion in Black Hawk Down, plenty of "choke-up" moments, or moments when I was moved by the unbelievable courage shown by the soldiers as they faced an almost hopeless situation. I'm not sure how anyone could not be moved by seeing these 18-25 year-old men trapped in the horror of a Civil War that had no bearing on U.S. National Security. As portrayed by the amazing ensemble cast, these men (really boys in many cases) showed the full range of emotions that our soldiers must have gone through, not to mention the fear and confusion of their situation. To me the cast standouts were Josh Hartnett (boy has he got BIG FUTURE STAR written all over him) as Staff Sgt Eversmann and Australian actor Eric Bana as Sgt 1st Class "Hoot."

Black Hawk Down is a great movie, and it is an important movie. It is the story of courage and heroism against nearly insurmountable odds. What happened in Somalia was a foreign policy failure for the U.S., but the actions of the soldiers sent into battle that October day were anything but failure. That there were not more casualties is a credit to them and ultimately a credit to all of us.


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