Tears of the Sun

March 7th, 2003


Tears of the Sun

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Still of Bruce Willis in Tears of the SunStill of Nick Chinlund in Tears of the SunStill of Bruce Willis in Tears of the SunStill of Bruce Willis in Tears of the SunStill of Johnny Messner in Tears of the SunStill of Monica Bellucci in Tears of the Sun

Bruce Willis plays a Special-Ops commander who leads his team into the jungle of Nigeria to rescue a doctor played by Monica Belluci who will only go with them if they agree to rescue 70 refugees too.

Release Year: 2003

Rating: 6.4/10 (47,294 voted)

Critic's Score: 48/100

Director: Antoine Fuqua

Stars: Bruce Willis, Cole Hauser, Monica Bellucci

Navy SEAL Lieutenant A.K. Waters and his elite squadron of tactical specialists are forced to choose between their duty and their humanity, between following orders by ignoring the conflict that surrounds them, or finding the courage to follow their conscience and protect a group of innocent refugees. When the democratic government of Nigeria collapses and the country is taken over by a ruthless military dictator, Waters, a fiercely loyal and hardened veteran is dispatched on a routine mission to retrieve a Doctors Without Borders physician, Dr. Lena Kendricks. Dr. Kendricks, an American citizen by marriage, is tending to the victims of the ongoing civil war at a Catholic mission in a remote village. When Waters arrives, however, Dr. Kendricks refuses to leave unless he promises to help deliver the villagers to political asylum at the nearby border. If they are left behind, they will be at the mercy of the enormous rebel army...

Writers: Alex Lasker, Patrick Cirillo

Bruce Willis - Lieutenant A.K. Waters
Monica Bellucci - Dr. Lena Fiore Kendricks
Cole Hauser - James 'Red' Atkins
Eamonn Walker - Ellis 'Zee' Pettigrew
Johnny Messner - Kelly Lake
Nick Chinlund - Michael 'Slo' Slowenski
Charles Ingram - Demetrius 'Silk' Owens
Paul Francis - Danny 'Doc' Kelley
Chad Smith - Jason 'Flea' Mabry
Tom Skerritt - Captain Bill Rhodes
Malick Bowens - Colonel Idris Sadick
Awaovieyi Agie - Musa
Akosua Busia - Patience
Hadar Busia-Singleton - Amaka
Ida Onyango - Lasana

Taglines: The lives of many rest in the courage of a few.


Official Website: Sony Pictures |

Release Date: 7 March 2003

Filming Locations: Dole Plantation - 64-1550 Kamehameha Highway, Wahiawa, O'ahu, Hawaii, USA

Box Office Details

Budget: $70,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend: $17,057,213 (USA) (9 March 2003) (2973 Screens)

Gross: $86,468,162 (Worldwide)

Technical Specs

Runtime:  | (director's cut)

Did You Know?

Kevin Smith was originally cast to co-star with Bruce Willis as a supporting SEAL team member. Tragically, he died from head injuries sustained from a three story prop tower fall, after his last film Warriors of Virtue: The Return to Tao wrapped.

Factual errors: In the final battle when the SEALs are retreating to the Cameroon border, Navy SEALs would never get that separated from each other in that situation to the point where they would have to ask who is where and what their status was. Getting that far apart compromises all small unit tactics that SEALs are taught and the team would loose total combat effectiveness. Though they would still use air support, Navy SEALs would never make themselves that vulnerable.

[first lines]
Female news reader: [voiceover] The tension that had been brewing for months in Nigeria exploded yesterday as exiled General Mustafa Yakubu orchestrated a swift and violent coup against the democratically elected government of President Samuel Azuka. In a land with 120 million people and over 250 ethnic groups...

User Review

Very worthwhile movie...give it a try.


Hmmm...where do I start? Should I point out to a recent reviewer, who sarcastically pointed out that Nigeria has an air force and could have bombed the group fleeing through the jungle, that the "bad guys" are rebels, not government forces? Since the rebels just killed everyone in the President's family, they probably scared off the government pilots, too. (Sorry...couldn't resist.)

And since when was a movie so horribly, horribly bad because it couldn't be filmed in the actual location? So what if this was filmed somewhere other than Nigeria? And so what if the music was not "authentic Nigerian music"? I don't remember a title card at the beginning of the movies saying it's a National Geographic documentary.

This is a good movie. Less action than many war movies and less thought than some political dramas. There are good and bad people of all races. There's tension and there are explosions and gunfire. There is ample opportunity to reflect on what mankind is capable of doing to each other for political reasons.

Give it a chance and I think you'll enjoy it. Better yet, I think you'll be sombered by it.


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