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No Man's Land

2001 Comedy Drama

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. more..

Director: Danis Tanovic

Starring: Branko Djuric, Rene Bitorajac, Filip Sovagovic,Simon Callow, Katrin Cartlidge

Reviews

  • The film is exciting in two big ways: its simplicity of story (Tanovic does not get bogged down trying to give us an epic history) and the breadth of Tanovic's vision.

    Mick LaSalle - The San Francisco Chronicle

    26 April 2013

  • In the remarkable, ferociously intelligent new film No Man's Land, Bosnian writer-director Danis Tanovic gives us a movie portrait of the Bosnian War, a conflict that has devastated his country, friends and neighbors -- and found in it both shocking humor and searing, relentless tragedy.

    Michael Wilmington - The Chicago Tribune

    26 April 2013

  • An absorbing, deeply affecting, well-acted --and remarkably evenhanded -- antiwar statement. It's also incredibly suspenseful and very blackly funny.

    Lou Lumenick - New York Post

    26 April 2013

  • Fierce, funny and finally devastating, Tanovic's superb film offers a timely look at the roots of civil war and acts of terrorism on both sides that can be exploited by political and media hypocrites alike.

    Peter Travers - Rolling Stone

    26 April 2013

  • A deeply serious and seriously hilarious fable of the lunacy of war.

    Joe Morgenstern - The Wall Street Journal

    26 April 2013

Awards

  • Best Feature Film

    AFI Fest (2001)

  • Best Foreign Language Film

    Academy Awards (2002)

  • Best Foreign Film (Mejor Película Extranjera)

    Argentinean Film Critics Association Awards (2003)

     
  • Best Foreign-Language Film

    Broadcast Film Critics Association Awards (2002)

     
  • Walther van den Ende

    Brothers Manaki International Film Festival (2001)