LowComDom Performances Presents
Film Review - Siege, The
For the benefit of readers from outside the U.S., I must explain that what is most important to an American is his civil rights as described in our Constitution. Try to step on these, and you'll have a very big fight on your hands.
The Siege is all about American civil rights, and what we are willing to sacrifice to protect them. The scenario is very believable. A group of Islamic terrorists are setting off bombs in buses and theaters in New York City. They want their leader released from U.S. custody. Each member of every terrorist cell understands that dying for the cause means a ticket to paradise for their soul.
Denzel Washington is Anthony 'Hub' Hubbard, the FBI agent in charge of bringing the terrorists down. Hub is committed to protecting the Constitution, and must find the terrorists within the bounds of the law. Bruce Willis plays Gen. William Devereaux, now in command of New York under martial law. These two clash because as much as Hub wants to protect civil rights, Devereaux's troops don't have that type of training, and end up stomping on the very Constitution that makes America what it is.
What The Siege illustrates is how fortunate we in the United States are that we don't have to fear our military, and why the military and the CIA are not permitted to operate actively within our borders.
There has been much criticism that Islamic terrorists were the bad guys in the film. But if you think about it, who has America pissed off more? The film does point out that it isn't the Islamic community we have to fear, just a small group who snuck across the border in the past 60 days.
Kudos for writer Lawrence Wright: the methods, causes and effects really make sense. At one point, I wondered of the wisdom of showing a movie which essentially explains how to be a terrorist. The writing also shines, in that no character is misplaced in the story. They have real agendas. Above par writing for an action film.
Directed by Edward Zwick
Released in 1998
MPAA Rating: R
Reviewed by Mongo