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The Siege was controversial already in 1998 when it was released: the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee and the Council on American-Islamic Relations both protested strenuously and said the movie was offensive and discriminatory. After the 9/11-2001 terrorist attacks on the United States it can be seen that the movie was in some ways prescient: it practically predicted terrorist attacks on New York by Islamic fundamentalists, a fatal lack of cooperation between the FBI and the CIA, and the imposition of measures that reduced civil liberties for average Americans.
In fact, the key conflict in The Siege is not the conflict between the terrorists and the law enforcement agencies. The key conflict is an ideological one: On one hand there are those who believe that all possible means, including the use of torture and the detention and isolation of suspects with no access to legal process, can be necessary responses to a terrorist threat.Read more ›
I am not sure why some reviewers rant about this being an anti-Islamic or anti-Arab propoganda. The movie shows a clear distinction between the good guys (Denzel's colleague in FBI is an Arab too) and the fanatics who plan to blow up buildings with no remorse all in the name of "allah". This film isn't about anti-ethnic sentiment, it's more about paranoia and hasty decision making brought about by reactionary leadership (such as the extant one, of course).
The story clicks on all of the present hot buttons such as terrorism in NYC, America's militant retaliation, and the futility of such belligerence in ridding the world of terrorism. It is unnerving to to think of how much our world has changed since this movie first came out so many years previously and that a film that was made to be entertaining and an escape from our real everyday life now is now a reminder of some very recent and real tragic events (7-11, US snipper shootings).Read more ›
Again and again we see the different views of how to proceed from the FBI, CIA and U.S. Armed Forces. A study in our government and their reaction in a small way. This movie was an eye opening when it came out but unfortunately written off as nonbelievable by too many.
Buy this movie, rent this movie, borrow this movie, but see this movie. You will be glad you did.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Wow! This movie was made in 1998, 2 years before 9-11. Granted, the plot did not develop in 9-11 as the movie might have portrayed about a serious terrorist attack. Read morePublished 8 days ago by Paul A. DeLong
An eye opener; loved the acting, actors and the plot. The ending could've been better, but I still love this movie.Published 1 month ago by Milagros
It is an entertainment, but we consider this movie a great mirror for what is happening nowadays. Denzel and Annette show well the desperation of hard times.Published 1 month ago by Antonio Callado
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