The Kingdom

Movies
1 out of 5 stars
A terrifically stupid film, this Middle East-set actioner thinks it’s ‘Syriana’ but plays like ‘Black Hawk Down’. The drama begins with a car-bomb attack on a fortified compound in Saudi Arabia that’s populated by the employees of an American oil company. That tragedy causes the FBI to send in a four-person crack team – Jamie Foxx, Jennifer Garner, Chris Cooper and Jason Bateman – who act like violent outlaws to get the job done, defying the protestations of oily US diplomat Jeremy Piven (playing his character in ‘Entourage’). The film may offer a dig at the US government’s foreign policy, but this is in favour of a far more brutal, interventionist approach. And the attempt in the final scenes to balance out the pain and suggest that we’re all suffering equally on this planet – especially babies – would be laughable if it wasn’t so horribly cynical. At the preview screening I attended, there was a drunk middle-aged woman whooping every time an American kicked ass. Just imagine how the 15-year-olds in Ohio will react. Dumb, dumb, dumb.

By: Dave Calhoun

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