No Man's Land (2001)

TOMATOMETER

AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: Bleak and darkly humorous, No Man's Land vividly illustrates the absurdity of war.

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Movie Info

The grim futility of the war between Bosnia and Serbia is reduced to its essence as two enemy soldiers are forced to share a wary trust for one another in this drama. A group of Bosnian soldiers are advancing upon Serbian territory during a misty night when the fog lifts at daybreak, making them plainly visible to their enemy. Serb forces open fire upon them, and soon only Chiki (Brancko Djuric) is still alive, after diving into a trench in no man's land. Two Serbian soldiers scouting the area set up a land mine using the body of a Bosnian soldier as "bait;" if moved, the mine will jump into the air and explode. Chiki watches as the soldiers set the trap, and furious at the disrespect to his fallen comrades, he kills one of the Serbs, and takes the other, Nino (Rene Bitorajac), hostage. With both soldiers alone and equally armed, they find themselves at a stalemate, and begin trying to attract help from either side. Eventually, the two men are found by a squadron of French soldiers attached to a U.N. peacekeeping unit; now held by supposedly neutral forces, Chiki and Nino are with the French troops when it's discovered that the dead Bosnian soldier isn't dead after all, though no one is sure how to disarm the mine without killing him in the process. No Man's Land was the debut feature from Bosnian writer and director Danis Tanovic.
Rating:
R (for violence and language)
Genre:
Art House & International , Drama
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
 wide
On DVD:
Box Office:
$948,054.00
Runtime:
Studio:

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Cast

Bogdan Diklic
as Serbian Officer
Mustafa Nadarevic
as Old Serbian Soldier
Georges Siatidis
as Marchand
Aleksandar Petrovic
as Bosnian Soldier 5
Mirza Tanovic
as Bosnian Officer
Tadej Troha
as Young Bosnian Soldier
Alain Eloy
as Pierre
Branko Zavrsan
as Demineur
Djuro Utjesanovic
as Bosnian Guide
Sacha Kremer
as Michel
Tanja Ribic
as Martha
Boro Stjepanovic
as Bosnian Soldier 1
Marinko Prga
as Serbian Soldier 1
Ales Valic
as Journalist 2
Uros Furst
as Bosnian Soldier at Barricade
Zvone Hribar
as Journalist 1
Kany Michel Obenga
as UNPROFOR Soldier
Almir Kurt
as Bosnian Soldier 2
Ratko Ristic
as Bosnian Soldier 3
Peter Sedmak
as Bosnian Soldier 4
Boris Cindric
as Miralem
Danijel Smon
as Serbian Officer 2
Primoz Ranik
as Cameraman
Rok Strehovec
as UNPROFOR Soldier
Fred M. Liss
as Journalist 3
Franc Jakob
as Journalist 4
Primoz Petrovsek
as Serbian Lieutenant at Barricade
Janez Habic
as Serbian Soldier at Barricade
Matej Bizjak
as Boy Accordionist
Darjan Gorela
as Serbian Soldier 2
Srecko Dzumber
as Serbian Soldier 3
Uros Tatomir
as Serbian Sergeant
Matej Recer
as Bosnian Officer at Barricade
Matija Bulatovic
as Bosnian Soldier at Barricade
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Critic Reviews for No Man's Land

All Critics (98) | Top Critics (26)

... a gripping piece of combat theater.

February 26, 2002
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic

It's hard to believe this is writer-director Danis Tanovic's first feature fiction film.

February 15, 2002
Houston Chronicle
Top Critic

The film would have been a stunner under any circumstances, but with the situation in Afghanistan and the Middle East worsening on a daily basis, No Man's Land feels even more relevant.

February 8, 2002
Miami Herald
Top Critic

The acting's so strong and the dialogue so realistic, that it feels authentic.

February 7, 2002
Dallas Morning News
Top Critic

A strange and disturbing film, but it is not without a stirringly humanist compassion even at its most outlandish and outrageous.

Full Review… | January 9, 2002
New York Observer
Top Critic

A well-mounted... seriocomedy with passing punchlines. And for about half the movie, it's compelling stuff.

December 21, 2001
Washington Post
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for No Man's Land

Two Bosnians and a Serb are trapped in a trench during the war between Bosnia and Serbia. I didn't think that this actually happened or that it could have happened; from the beginning of the film, I knew that it was a metaphor. And as metaphors go, it's pretty good. The situation is, of course, contrived, but it allows Bosnian writer/director Danis Tanovic to show the futility of war and the arguments, which are essentially identical from both sides. He waxes political when he includes the ineffective international community, suggesting that while other nations are well-intentioned, their efforts are burdened by bureaucracy. The characters are cut from bland cloth, essentially types rather than real people, but Tanovic assumes that in metaphors, we don't require nuance; he's likely right. Overall, No Man's Land is not a great film, but it succeeds in what it sets out to do.

Jim Hunter
Jim Hunter

Super Reviewer

½

A terrific movie with many, many layers. The UN is ripped for its do-nothing foolishness, but equally well presented is the difficulty of peacemaking itself. Ultimately it is not the failure of the UN, but the failure of humans to let go of the past in favor of peace. Biting drama, well conceived and executed. All this, and humor, too.

Cynthia S.
Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer

½

I'm pretty sure my favorite part was the random appearance of the villain from Ace Ventura 2. This is by no means a movie that I got into, but I can't deny that it's an interesting concept. It's just that some of the symbolism is way too obvious and it takes away from the overall story and message. One thing I really liked was the idea of broadening the scope ten fold about half way in. There's all this intimacy and then suddenly it's like an entire UN fleet and a news team. The Reservoir Dogs atmosphere to the initial character interaction is what I would consider weak, mainly because all I was thinking about was Reservoir Dogs.

Conner Rainwater
Conner Rainwater

Super Reviewer

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