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Tears of the Sun (Special Edition) (2003)

Bruce Willis , Cole Hauser , Antoine Fuqua  |  R |  DVD
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (351 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Bruce Willis, Cole Hauser, Monica Bellucci, Eamonn Walker, Johnny Messner
  • Directors: Antoine Fuqua
  • Writers: Alex Lasker, Patrick Cirillo
  • Producers: Arnold Rifkin, Cathy Schulman, Heidi Fugeman, Ian Bryce, Joe Roth
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Special Edition, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Dubbed: French
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 1 encoding (US and Canada only)
    Some Region 1 DVDs may contain Regional Coding Enhancement (RCE). Some, but not all, of our international customers have had problems playing these enhanced discs on what are called "region-free" DVD players. For more information on RCE, click .
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: June 10, 2003
  • Run Time: 121 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (351 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000095WW8
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #24,150 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Tears of the Sun (Special Edition)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Writer's observations
  • Journey to Safety: Making Tears of the Sun
  • Voices of Africa
  • Deleted scenes
  • Africa fact track
  • Interactive map of Africa

Editorial Reviews

Additional Features

Because of the intense political nature of Tears of the Sun, it's no surprise that a good deal of the DVD content is devoted to the political and historical background of Africa. Director Antoine Fuqua discusses it in his feature-length commentary track, along with other comments about the film itself. Another commentary track, in which the authors recall the making of the film and the material that was cut, lasts 17 minutes and is not related to the portion of the film it accompanies. A pop-up "fact track" offers further background and production info, as does a 15-minute making-of featurette. Eight of the African actors discuss their harrowing personal experiences in "Voices of Africa," and eight deleted scenes wouldn't have added much to the film, other than introducing two small but important characters earlier. The sound mix is particularly involving during the climactic scene. --David Horiuchi

Product Description

Bruce Willis, Monica Bellucci, Eamonn Walker. After an African nation descends into anarchy, an elite special forces team is sent in to evacuate American doctors, but they won't leave without their patients-and there are thousands of enemy troops closing in behind them. 2003/color/121 min/R/widescreen.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
121 of 132 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars John McCain: Navy SEAL? March 20, 2003
By John
Tears of the Sun is more than what the trailers make it out to be. It's not your normal action movie, meaning the plot isn't just an excuse to have lots of things blow up. The story focuses more on the internal struggles of Willis's character than anything else. If you watched the trailer and were hoping for Die Hard 4: The African Edition, you will be sorely disappointed.
The plot revolves around a mission by US Navy SEALs to go into a hostile area of Nigeria and rescue an American doctor. The doctor (Monica Bellucci) is living at Mission, taking care of sick and dying Nigerians. Getting the doctor out is only a minor hassle, the real trouble begins when Willis' characters internal struggles of following orders vs. doing what is right get the best of him and he decides to try and save all the Nigerian patients. From there all hell breaks loose and there are a few surprises before the end.
As I said before, this is not your normal action movie. It doesn't go gonzo on the special effects and explosions, but obviously this is a war movie and there is plenty of violence near the end. The thing is, by the time people do start dying, you will care. On a side note, there are several parts of the movie that are unrealistic (the main one being a Navy SEAL going against explicit orders from his commanding officer), but these can be easily forgiven and overlooked.
The combat depicted is on par with the best recent war movies, such as Black Hawk Down and We Were Soldiers. It's very realistic. The "grand finale" battle at the end is a pretty intense 30 minutes, and is best experienced at a theater with good sound. Overall, this is a very satisfying movie that is worth the exorbitant ticket prices these days.
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57 of 61 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Tears of the Sun is well worth seeing March 10, 2003
By A Customer
Tears of the Sun is a first class war movie in the realistic style of Black Hawk Down. The plot centers on a mission by US Navy SEALs to rescue an American doctor at a mission in Nigeria during a civil war.
Bruce Willis stars as the officer commanding the SEAL detachment. He and the other actors potraying SEALs received training from real SEALs and, therefore, come across as authentic instead of the usual Hollywood portayal of speical operators as undiscplined psychopaths.
The level of violence in this movie is high as expected in a war movie, but it is never exaggerated or cartoonish. Neither is it included just to keep the excitement level up. Instead, violence is portrayed as the inevitable product of war and is shown realistically as real human suffering.
The movie is very tightly edited and moves quickly. There are no long periods of chatter and no padding. The movie gets right into the story it intends to tell and moves along quickly. I was surprised when the movie ended that 2 hours had actually passed.
The battle scenes are clearly the product of some considerable effort at realism. The good guys are not invincible and the bad guys are not incompetent. Weapons effects are realistic, not exaggerated. Wounds are authentically gory, but not overdone for effect's sake.
In conclusion. Tears of the Sun attempts to paint a believeable picture of believable human beings in a frightening and brutal situation. It is one of the finest war movies I have seen and I recommend it highly to anyone who likes the genre.
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72 of 83 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Tears [of the Sun] March 9, 2003
Tears of the Sun brings Bruce Willis back to the rebel-with-a-cause-and-a-big-gun role. This isn't a date movie. Lots of guerrilla combat, lots of blood and a subplot that is revealed only well into the movie -- and I won't spoil it for you. If the basic plot is nothing new, the film comes together very well, and it outclasses a lot of other action flicks.
Willis (as Lt. Waters) leads his men into Nigeria to rescue an American doctor. In a fit of conscience, after having achieved his mission, Waters orders his choppers to return so that he can rescue the band of doomed refugees. We feel good about that. Especially after seeing what the Nigerian rebels did to the hospital after Waters and company evacuated. If you accept that a special forces lieutenant would disobey orders and follow his conscience, the rest of the story unfolds well.
Visually, Tears of the Sun is a stunner. You will feel as though you spent a couple of hours in the rain forest. Some of the gorier scenes look like the sort of thing that might be omitted from news coverage of such events, but it was enough for me. The pace is intense -- not much time spent chatting around the campfire. I can't vouch for the accuracy of the military operations, but Willis is very credible in this role, and realism tends to win out over dramatic licence. At least until the final sequences.
If you like action films with at least a layer of human interest, you will probably enjoy Tears of the Sun. It falls short only in the ways most desperation mission movies do -- some narrow escapes that require us to be grateful for our heroes without overanalyzing. ... But the overall writing is quite good. ...
Tears of the Sun may not be the film of the year, but it holds together well and kept the audience absorbed. It shows American soldiers as capable, confident and caring. That's a good image, and one that sends you home thinking that our men and women in uniform can do a lot of good.
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25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Will have Hollywood up in arms March 10, 2003
13 out of 15 found this review helpful. (I added a sentence or two and the votes were reset.)
As expected, critics are upset at the film's slightly pro-American view ("balanced" with hints of the darker side, of course).'s reviewer was apparently grinding his?her? teeth so much he couldn't even understand the dialogue:
"When someone points out a potential problem with his strategy, for example, Waters replies, "There are lots of possible scenarios and I don't presume to know them all." What great military man would put himself and his men at such risk without considering all the consequences?"
But Waters was responding to the doctor's plea that if they left, the villagers would be killed. His response, above, was simply a cop-out which neither of them believed - nothing to do with what the reviewer supposes. The real complaint these reviewers have is this that (gasp) American soldiers, for all their flaws, are portrayed as heroes:
"... the blind patriotism we are spoon-fed towards the end makes this film a little hard to swallow."
The "blind patroitism" must refer to the refugees' tears and cries of eternal gratitude for the courageous sacrifice that has bought their very lives. And that's the essence of the cries of "too simplistic," "propaganda," "jingoistic" - which is code for "I am upset that this film does not portray American soldiers as mentally deranged, pot-smoking, homicidal, genocidal, racist, trigger-happy scum of the earth." We are not given any backstory to explain that the murderous rebels were driven to their life of hatred because their parents couldn't afford to get them "Boggle" when they were kids, or any such "evenhandedness." Fuqua presents viewers with the stark reality of evil, not the evil of war.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars TEARS OF THE SUM
I definitely would have wanted to see Bruce Willis in this one at the theater. Thumbs up and worth the buy
Published 6 days ago by Darrell Raglin
5.0 out of 5 stars Action Packed!
A great movie, but so shocking why do we always kill the innocent?
The tribe that was fleeing from the Rebels, we're being hunted only because of their bloodline? Read more
Published 7 days ago by Steve Hamilton
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Movie!
SUCH AN AMAZING MOVIE! EXTREMELY UNRATED MOVIE! One of the very few movies that makes me tear up. Love it.
Published 8 days ago by Edsel Anthony Daley
4.0 out of 5 stars tears of the sun
was a heart wrencher and kept me glued to my seat i enjoyed the scenary and told the story well
Published 9 days ago by zephyr
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Movie
Bruce Willis, one of his best!! Soundtrack is also a must have. Movie will keep you on the edge of your seat.
Published 10 days ago by Rhonda Huebner
5.0 out of 5 stars Crazy movie but true
Love this movie enough to buy it and watch it on my big screen TV. Hard to beleive that this really is happening in the world.. Quick shipper, fair price and great condition. Read more
Published 25 days ago by Buckman355
5.0 out of 5 stars Great DVD
Bruce Willis and the cast are at their finest in this tale of rescue.
Lots of war action, and I highly recommend this, if you like war flicks and great story lines.
Published 1 month ago by Lee R. Chumbley
5.0 out of 5 stars tremendous movie!!!
Action and emotions, good and bad ones One of B Willis`s better movies. A lot of gore and not for children but still a awesome movie! Read more
Published 1 month ago by clint halverson
5.0 out of 5 stars A true story of redemption.
A story of the men behind the scenes in a country torn by Civil War. How one tribe in Africa can turn against another tribe is amazing, and the horrific things man will do to man. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Stephanie E. Horn
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good
Thid umd movie was very good . It's easy to become very emotioonal when you watch it. Well played and well writtn
Published 2 months ago by Robert P Johnson Sr
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petition to release The Siege of Firebase Gloria to the dvd format
Absolutely, positively, as strong as I can state it, you are correct. It is a sin that this movie as not been made available on DVD.
Dec 6, 2009 by Michael D. Smith |  See all 3 posts
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