Tears of the Sun review by Jackass Tom

Blah Blah Bruce Willis Blah

I can’t remember the last military commando movie I saw. It probably had Arnold Swartzenegger and I am guessing it was the like the other fifty I saw before it. You see one, and you have seen them all. The formula is laid out for anyone daring to pen his or her own. Include a man chiseled out of granite, but not finely chiseled (Bruce Willis). The setting is your current foreign hot zone (in this case an African village). Give our military stalwart a bunch of civilians, possibly foreign themselves but not necessarily (in this case the African villagers that have been enthusiastically adhering to Christian ideals taught to them by American missionaries). Throw in evil, ruthless villains (African Christian killing rebels “Booooo!”) and a battle at the end with tons of explosions, and the good guy has to limp off the playing field in victory. Sound familiar? THIS IS EVERY DAMN SWARTZENEGGER OR BRUCE WILLIS ACTION FILM!!! And if you were in the theatre’s this past weekend, it was probably Tears of the friggin Sun.

So let me fill in some gaps. Bruce Willis is a NAVY SEAL and he is sent to Africa with a single mission: Save this hot Italian looking doctor (an enticing proposition I might add). Within the first ten minutes BW finds her and I am thinking, “Great, it’s a wrap. Who’s up for some flapjacks at IHOP?” No. This Italian sports car has six gears: Bitch-1 through Bitch-6. Instead of saying “Oh great, you are going to save me.” She says, “Get out of here! I am not going.” She bends, but only on one condition: Everyone in the village has to be saved too. You know Bruce’s answer to that: Not only NO! But HELL NO!

BUT WAIT!! B-Will has one of those stereotypical “Marine changes of heart” and decides to turn around the helicopter and save the refugees. Ha! So Bruce defies his boss, which apparently in the Marines isn’t a big deal anymore. He also engages in combat with a hostile nation of rebels. Apparently that’s no biggie either. Since when did the Marines become this soft? Are they taking notes from Oprah? Towards the end, Bruce calls in the big guns: by that I mean bunch of jets to bomb the place. I am sorry, but isn’t there supposed to be some ‘Commander-In-Chief’ call ahead first? I know Bruce has some big pull these days, but he can call in his own daisy-cutters? Damn. What do I get?

Going back to the little Italian hottie; I would think once you a marine to turn a copter around; you have to be pretty content. Apparently she has higher expectations of everyone else and didn’t stop whining even after saving the children of Sally Struthers. Amazingly she could fine at least one thing to complain about every quarter-hour. “My people are tired, we should stop even though if we do, we could die.”, “We need to help out these people too even if it means pulling the US into a war!”, “This makeup that I put on 7 days ago is conveniently smudged but doesn’t disappear. Do I look funny?” FOOTNOTE: Besides being hot, the one thing that saves her is the increasing cleavage. It’s a standard case of movie time to cleavage correlation.

The best parts of this movie are the scenic segues. Each scene is preceded by one of the director’s assorted shots of the beautiful African rain forests, waterfalls, mountains, and greenery. Being a photographer myself, and being a photographer that loves a good nature shot I can’t help feeling a little bit jealous of director Antoine Fuqua. At the same time, I could probably get the same shot from an episode of National Geographic.

In the end, Fuqua, leaves us with a preachy message. I can’t clearly recall the exact quote but it something to the tune of “The greatest evil in the world is when good that does not act when it can.” Something like that… he is essentially bashing America for not getting involved in every skirmish around the world. Good timing Fuqua. If this movie didn’t finish with a gushing with post war drama during a 10-minute teary-eyed “congratulation” and “thank you very much” that makes me want to vomit, I might give a rat’s ass. And if the US weren’t going to war under a bit of controversy, I might also care. And if half the nations we try to protect don’t give a rat’s ass about us and in most cases would rather have us out of their country, I might also give a rat’s ass. More importantly, if there was a decent movie in 2 hours preceding the credits, I might give a rat’s ass. But I don’t.

3 out of 10 Jackasses
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