Behind Enemy Lines

MPAA Rating: PG-13

Entertainment: +3 1/2

Content: -2 1/2

Navy Lt. Chris Burnett (Owen Wilson) has the instincts of a fighter pilot and chafes for a real combat mission, which is prevented by the international political climate in Bosnia. As he sees it, Were watching, not fighting. His superior, Admiral Reigart (Gene Hackman) thinks Burnett hasnt learned the full idea of what it means to be a soldier under authority. While on a routine reconnaissance mission, Burnett photographs a Serbian action not meant to be seen, which gets him shot down behind enemy lines. NATO Forces leader Admiral Piquet (Joaquim De Almeida) wants to prevent the rescue because he thinks it will disrupt a fragile political peace. Reigart, a hard-nosed, by-the-book commander, struggles with disobeying his superiors. But to save his downed officer, Reigert must bend the rules and risk his career. As Burnett spends a harrowing time dodging relentless pursuit by ruthless Serbs including a secret police enforcer, a deadly tracker, and hostile troops, Reigart finally launches an unauthorized rescue mission to save Burnett. In this time of renewed patriotism, American audiences will appreciate both the advanced military technology and the heroic spirit of the U.S. military represented in this film.

Admiral Reigart, disgusted with Lt. Burnett's undisciplined attitude, accepts his letter of resignation from the military just before Burnett leaves on his ill-fated mission. Although Burnett wants combat experience, he gets much more than he bargained for. He's forced into hours of trying to evade the cruel Serbs who want to eliminate him. Graphic violence includes execution of Burnett's co-pilot and many civilians. Scenes of rotting corpses in a mass burial are also gruesome. Both Burnett and Reigart exhibit selfless bravery, Burnett by running back under fire to retrieve incriminating evidence of atrocities by the Serbs, and Reigart in sacrificing his command in order to save Burnett. His military training, experience and beliefs won't allow him to "let that kid die out there." An angel's statue seems to imply guardian-type protection, but obscenities and strong profanity make the dialogue far from angelic. The use of satellite technology to locate the downed soldier is amazing. But more inspiring is the gung ho, can do attitudes of the rescue team members, who volunteer to risk their lives to save one man. Even though the foul language, violence, and gore occur in a military context, they dampen the acceptability of this action-packed thriller. The strong profanity is particularly offensive.

Preview Reviewer: Ed Crumley
Twentieth Century Fox, 10201 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90035

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Many (14) times Mild 9, moderate 5

Obscene Language: Many (17) times - F-word, 2, s-word 15

Profanity: Many (12) times Regular (GD 9, J 2, Csake)

Violence: Many times Moderate and Severe (plane blows up in air, bloody wounds, many mine field and other explosions, man beaten with fists, man executed with shot to head, men shoot civilians, executed corpses rot in ditch, man killed with burning flare stuck in chest, large group of men killed in battle)

Sex: None

Nudity: None

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: None

Drugs: None

Other: Statue of angel at point where man originally lands and is later rescued seems to imply heavenly protection, civilians try to help man in trouble, enemy tracker refuses to help fellow soldier trapped by land mine

Running Time: 93 minutes
Intended Audience: Mature teens and Adults

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