Sign up for our newsletters   

Baltimore City Paper home.

film Home > Movie Reviews

Film Clips

Behind Enemy Lines

Behind Enemy Lines

Director:John Moore
Cast:Owen Wilson, Gene Hackman
Genre:Film, War

By Ian Grey | Posted

If there's such a thing as "war porn," this is it: An exciting, well-crafted entertainment whose post-Three Kings gloss of political complication never dilutes its brilliant understanding of our insatiable attraction to seeing things and people blow up colorfully. On an aircraft carrier off the Balkans, frustrated navigator Lt. Burnett (Owen Wilson, oozing aw-shucks charm) yearns for a chance to do serious war stuff. Spotting some treaty-breaking military installations during a recon flight, he ends up on the wrong side of a missile and crashes into the Bosnian forest. Due to pesky international agreements, his boss, Adm. Riegert (Gene Hackman), can't do jack save advise from afar, leaving Burnett no choice but to run like hell for the rest of the movie. Neophyte director John Moore keeps the endorphins pumping as Burnett executes a frenzied tango over a mine-laden stockyard, hides in a corpse-filled ditch, and finds common ground with a wary Bosnian kid who loves Ice Cube. There's enough semiplausible political intrigue to sell the notion that in a complex and dangerous world the only sane reaction is to shrug, leave it to the military to sort things out, and tuck into another astonishing battle sequence. You'll cheer, you'll be thrilled, you'll be sick at yourself when it's over.

Comments powered by Disqus
Calendar
CP on Facebook
CP on Twitter