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Sahara [Blu-ray]

4.1 out of 5 stars 631 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Master explorer Dirk Pitt goes on the adventure of a lifetime of seeking out a lost Civil War battleship known as the "Ship of Death" in the deserts of West Africa while helping a UN doctor being hounded by a ruthless dictator.

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Product Details

  • Actors: Matthew McConaughey, Steve Zahn, Penélope Cruz, Christopher Bello, Nicholas Beveney
  • Directors: Breck Eisner
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, Color, Dolby, DTS Surround Sound, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, French, Spanish
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    Parental Guidance Suggested
  • Studio: Paramount
  • DVD Release Date: June 3, 2008
  • Run Time: 123 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (631 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000IOM0X8
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #113,656 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Sahara [Blu-ray]" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
I don't know the reaction of Clive Cussler fans to this film -- I don't know why the author is so angry about it -- but as an ordinary film fan, 'Sahara' is mostly enjoyable, if not outstanding action adventure film. Matthew McCoaughey is a likable treasure hunting hero Dirk Pitt from 'NUMA'; Steve Zahn is a scene-stealing sidekick (and he is always so) Al Giordino; and Penelope Cruz as a doctor Eva Rojas from WHO, who gets involved with Dirk's adventures. These premises, together with the hidden gold coins made during the time of the Civil War, sound much like 'National Treasure,' and the comparison is interesting because director of 'Sahara' is Breck Eisner ('Taken') also known as son of Michael Eisner.

But 'Sahara' is different from that Nicholas Cage film, and that is the location mostly set in the hot desert of Africa. Dirk, Al, and another NUMA agent Rudi (Rainn Wilson) borrowing a small boat from Admiral Sandecker (William H. Macy), cruise on the river into the desert of Mali, Africa, where he believes a huge US iron-clad ship disappered with gold coins.

At the same time, the film shows us that a deadly plague is killing the people of Mali. So, on the way to the country, Dirk and Al travel with a beautiful doctor Eva, who seeks for the cause of the disease with her senior Dr. Frank (Glynn Turman). Don't call it a contrived story yet, for 'Sahara' is going to get more contrived as the team is attacked by the machine-guns, rockets, tanks, and helicopters of the country's troops, and their incredible adventures begin.

That's it, and that's all I have to say. The film is made with a familiar set-pieces, none of which are particularly imaginative or innovative, but techinically speaking they are fine.
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Format: DVD
Clive Cussler's books featuring Dirk Pitt have always been a favorite of mine. That's a bit of a guilty pleasure. Cussler's characters could better be called caricatures. His plots are also larger than life -- no one could suspend disbelief enough to think that the things Cussler dreams up for his hero Dirk Pitt could ever happen in real life.

But that does not stop me from enjoying the books. Cussler's lively imagination captures me in his make-believe world for a time. And his almost self-parodying characters always entertain as an escape from real life people.

The movie Sahara is the same way. It's just as fun to watch as the book Sahara is to read.

Yes, it's true that the movie does not follow the book. That's probably a good thing. Cussler's novels would not translate well to the movie screen if the translation were too direct. Cussler's intricate plotting, his attention to detail (as in his detailed description of each classic car that appears in any book), and his rather cartoonish dialogue work in his books. They would look foolish in a movie.

As a movie, Sahara works best as a family picture. Adults will probably find it entertaining enough. Children will find it easy to understand, with enough humor and surprises to keep their interest.

Definitely not a must-see film. But everyone in our family liked it. Both adults, and both children. Everyone thumbs up. That's pretty rare.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
"Sahara" had less than a stellar turn out at the box office upon its initial release and I happened to let it slip by my radar at the time. I had read the novel upon which the film was based and thought it stupid but fun and I expected the film to be about the same but with more emphasis on the former than the latter. Well I was a bit wrong on that score. Sure, "Sahara" isn't going to win awards for smarts but hey this is an action adventure film and it doesen't pretend to be anything but that. Fortunately thats what makes this film stand out from a lot of others of its kind. Its concerned only with providing good old fashioned actioneer fun; nothing more and nothing less and it succeeds quite well with those simple ambitions.

Now if your a hardcore Cussler/Dirk Pitt fan you may be disappointed with the fact that the films characterizations are not the same as the ones in the book but I will argue that the movie does a good job of at least staying true to the spirit of those characters. Frankly I'm not overly impressed with Cussler's writing. His characrers are flat and his dialog is laughable. For example, his villains are right out of some old pulp or movie serial and will actually say things like: "The American devils have foiled our plans and now they must die!!" I kid you not, that is not an exaggeration of typical Cussler dialog. You can see how that may not translate well to film and fortunately the film makers are able to make the dialog and story a bit smarter than the original material upon which it is based. Anyway, the actors are fine and are having a great time and the direction and cinematography are above average.
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Format: DVD
I've never read Clive Cussler so I can't compare the movie to his novel, but I enjoyed the film. It's not a classic and it won't win any awards but it will entertain you. Dirk Pitt and his pal Al Giordano are treasure hunters looking for an ironclad ship from the American Civil War that may have somehow ended up in Africa. Penelope Cruz plays a doctor from the WHO investigating a new illness spreading from an African country. They cross paths and together find the source of the disease and eventually find the Civil War ship. The plot is preposterous and you never believe Cruz as a WHO physician but the movie is action packed from beginning to end and Steven Zahn as sidekick Al provides some genuinely funny moments. Sahara delivers exactly what it sets out to, a few hours of mindless entertainment.
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