• Directed by William Friedkin
• Produced by Scott Rudin, Richard D.
• Written by James H. Webb Stephen
Gaghan Starring: Tommy Lee Jones,
Samuel L. Jackson
Guy Pearce, Bruce Greenwood, Blair
Underwood, Philip Baker Hall,
with Anne Archer, and Ben Kingsley
• Release Date: 2000
• The movie, a military, political, and legal drama,
is about Marine Colonel Terry Childers, played
by Jackson, who is brought to court-martial on
charges of disobeying the rules of
engagement in a military incident at an
American embassy in Sana'a, Yemen, resulting
in the slaughter of many civilians by Childers'
• Interestingly the lead writer, James H. Webb, is
a former Marine combat officer, lawyer
and Secretary of the Navy.
This film is perfect for the American audience as it is very
patriotic though, it is trying to represent the American
soldiers who have fought or are fighting in war. The main
character is in fact so devoted to his country that in one
part of the film he risks his life to save the American flag
from the shooting Yemeni's.
This film is among many that chooses to vilify Arab
people, in particular insinuating Yemen is a ‘training
ground for terrorist’
Jack Shaheen: (5.00)
Shaheen argues that the slaughter of women and
children has been justified in this film, as the audience
we will feel the humanity is not there, ‘these Arabs
are not human so what’s left?’
The film drew widespread criticism for its portrayal of
Arab characters. The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination
Committee described it as "probably the most racist film
ever made against Arabs by Hollywood". Paul Clinton of
the Boston Globe wrote "at its worst, it's blatantly racist,
using Arabs as cartoon-cutout bad guys".
• The first encounter we have of the Yemini Arabs in the film is
of them in a crowd screaming and chanting (something in
Arabic) at the American Embassy.
• This crowd included the typical image of Arabs; bearded men
with the Taliban scarf around their head, fully veiled women.
This crowd Also included young children who also joined in
on the chanting.
• The image that we get from this depiction is that these Arabs
are violent and hateful towards American's.
• There’s also an assumption that in most Arab countries they
are incapable of taking care of themselves or ‘managing’
their country, and this is further emphasised in the film where
there is only one Yemini Officer to control the crowd who is
later beaten up by the crowd.
• A stereotype of Muslim women that is further
emphasised in the film is that women are
powerless and controlled by the men.
• However there is also and interesting
stereotype where the Muslim women promote
the violence and even encourage the
• An assumption was made that all the crowd
members were ‘jihadis’ even though one
jihadi tape was found in the hospital.