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In Enemy Hands (2004)

Til Schweiger , Thomas Kretschmann , Tony Giglio  |  R |  DVD
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Til Schweiger, Thomas Kretschmann, Connor Donne, Matt Lindquist, Andy Gatjen
  • Directors: Tony Giglio
  • Producers: Michael Z. Gordon
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Dubbed: French, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Lions Gate
  • DVD Release Date: October 26, 2004
  • Run Time: 94 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0002S94G6
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #57,024 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "In Enemy Hands" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

William H. Macy, Scott Caan. A gripping drama unfolds when the crew members of a German sub are infected with meningitis and things get so bad, their American prisoners onboard are forced to work with them in order to run the sub and to avoid contagion. But the true test comes when they are spotted by an U.S. carrier ship. 2004/color/98 min/R/widescreen.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
22 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Missing the Point January 10, 2005
Having NOT seen this in a theater, as it was only released on DVD in the U.S., I can only comment on the DVD version. I have seen half of it in English (in which Germans are speaking excellent English), and all of it dubbed in German (released in Germany, with no subtitles). There, of course, the Americans are speaking German all too well.

This film must be taken for what it is, I think. A showcase for W.H. Macy (his acting is not superficial, nor are his interactions with his wife, whom he had to leave as Chief on the U.S.S. Swordfish). Sure, the numbers and names of ships are all wrong. Did NO Kapitän-Leutnant serve underwater with his blue tunic on, as suggested by one reviewer? This is a good introduction to Til Schweiger, who really is of matinee-idol stature and appearance, as Captain of one U-Boat, and the first watch officer (Thomas Kretschmann) really shows his acting talents....compeletely different in Stalingrad, The Pianist, U-571. Perhaps Mr. Macy was not challenged by the role, and the meningitis outbreak is unbelieveable....but aren't movies unbelieveable. Do they not require suspension of disbelief, even the best?

I did not expect the Barry Lyndon of U-Boat movies. The sets are too wide, the U.S. sub is too brightly lit...but the "best set" film has been done (Das Boot) and took a year to film (see the Director's Cut DVD). Other criticisms are hollow...the flag, the seaman appearing to wear a modern German Navy tunic (I have seen them, I do not think so, but it is a brief shot. At least no one is wearing Chuck Taylor sneakers! And the back and forth between Macy and Kretschmann (Captaincy shifting back and forth depending on the conditions and likelihood of being captured by Americans or Germans--all within a few hundrend miles of the U.S.
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22 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Missed the boat..... July 9, 2005
By James B
The other reviewers that is.

This is a fabulous film that superficially is about WW2 submarine warfare (and yes you can see there's a lot of low-rent sets...especially the interior shots of the American submarine). In Enemy Hands is the best male-ensemble war film since Platoon...& maybe better. It isn't William Gacy's best effort(he seems to throw off his lines like an aging hipster)

& perhaps it's because Til Schweiger absolutely steals the film with his nuanced deeply effective performance of the U-boat Captain.

What I think is truly subversive is the metaphor- in this case meningitis that affects the American crew and later contaminates the German crew which has rescued the them. You don't have to dig deep (or think too hard) to find that this is an anti-war film on the surface and a clever way of critiquing America's influence

and culture throughout the world. The film id's it as a disease- a fatal disease that infects all.

And it's somewhat of a trojan horse in that it masquerades as the familiar genre of naval warfare films.

Look closely- the German actors are wonderful to look at...they look healthy...the Americans? Wimpy, non-descript, outside of the head bangin'banty-rooster American sub commander.

This is a hidden gem of a film- perhaps too subtle for a mass-audience of film goers. If you've taken a good film history class or studied acting- I think you'll be blown away.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars good flick December 14, 2012
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
love these type of movies. this one is very good. my wife watched it and loved it to. thank you.
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16 of 22 people found the following review helpful
'In Enemy Hands' stars the solid cast, including William H Macy ('Fargo'), Scott Caan ('Ocean's 11'), Lauren Holly ('Turbulance'), Till Schweiger ('Driven') and Thomas Kretschmann ('The Pianist').

This low-budget film (by Artisan and others) about the two WW2 submalines and their crew has one interesting idea at its core, but fails to make good use of it. In 1943, USS Swordfish Lt. led by Cmdr Randall Sullivan (Caan) encounters its enemy ship, German U-Boat U-429 led by Kaptain Jonas Herdt (Schweiger).

The film then shows one intriguing premise -- What if the crew of the boats share the same submarine; what if they must join force to survive the situations that get more and more deadly to them?

Sadly writer/director Tony Giglio fails to find the best method to develop this idea. You know, in this case, you need lively, interesting characters to engage our attention. Instead, Giglio assembled the used materials from other submarine films, and patched them up to cover the whole 98 minutes. You can hear the echoes of other better films -- I don't name names -- when you see the mutiny/hostage situation, and occasional torpedo attacks. And you also get one epidemic, too, which is too conviniently introduced.

William H Macy and Thomas Kretschmann, both playing the officers under command of Caan and Schweiger respectively, are doing their best, but it is obvious that the acting is nowhere near their best. And as to ill-used Lauren Holly (who was also ill-used in 'Down Periscope'), and Jeremy Sisto whose character is reduced to a pixel, I have nothing to say except that they deserve much better roles than these.

I don't say 'In Enemy Hands' is badly done. It just lacks originality.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 15 days ago by J. Jack
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Movie
Good movie. Love Til Schweiger.
Published 29 days ago by Nuclear Me
2.0 out of 5 stars should be on discount
It is watchable and mildly entertaining, but that is really the best that can be said about it. From the point of view of historical accuracy, it is far, far from the mark. Read more
Published 1 month ago by dfwncl
4.0 out of 5 stars A good watch
World War II was a time of such import, that I enjoyed watching this movie to show that the human spirit can overcome so much
Published 4 months ago by Pamela Smith-Boynton
5.0 out of 5 stars good movie
is a great movie. a great addition to my library. have enjoyed it already. i wish i had seen it in the theater
Published 4 months ago by mysticman76
5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable and suspenseful WWII sub movie
There can never be too many U-boat movies. If this is how you feel, then "In Enemy Hands" is a movie you'll enjoy. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Avraham Azrieli
4.0 out of 5 stars In enemy Hands
This order was good for a standard DVD. I don't understand why it's not on bluray.
It is a tense well acted movie that didn't seem to get much recognition.
Published 5 months ago by Richard Tosti
3.0 out of 5 stars Good but not great
Interesting movie but has a hard time getting its message across. Some good parts but at times I was wondering when are we going to move on. Enjoyed it however. .
Published 5 months ago by Rollin L. Schwab
5.0 out of 5 stars Ian Somerhalder is in this film
I went on Amazon and found every Ian Somerhalder film I could find and bought them for my daughter who's a big fan. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Al Gore
5.0 out of 5 stars A good movie
This got some bad reviews but I thought it was a pretty good movie. Of course anyone who has been aboard a real submarine will have a good laugh at the spacious compartments shown... Read more
Published 6 months ago by D. Simmons
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