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Beyond Borders
DVD disk
10.08.2004 By: Indiana Sev
Beyond Borders order
Director:
Martin Campbell

Actors:
Angelina Jolie
Clive Owen
Teri Polo

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
Sarah Jordan (Jolie) has the perfect life, a loving and charming husband and a wonderful job at an art gallery. They’re well off, they’re happy and they’re completely fulfilled. Until one night, at a fundraising gala for the impoverished, a humanitarian doctor crashes the party and pleas for more help. She soon finds herself falling in love with the cause and the man. The movie spans roughly eleven years of their relationship as she sees him on and off, from Ethiopia, to Cambodia to Chechnya. An unpredictable and touching romance follows…
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
was licking my chops getting ready to destroy this movie even before I saw it. It looked boring and predictable and to top it all off, I’m not exactly the world’s biggest Angelina Jolie fan. As fate would have it, I actually ended up liking it! I hadn’t expected the film to be as romance driven as it turned out to be and I expected even less to be won over by the valiant efforts and touching sacrifices the people in the movie made for the poor, sick and starving people of the world. Damn, it sure made what I do seem all the more insignificant (I mean, for Christ’s Sake, I go by the name of Indiana Sev). As I’ve hinted to in earlier reviews, I’m usually a sucker for soaring, unpretentious and moving romances and this one turned out to be quite the original tale of two seemingly different people who meet each other at the wrong time in their lives, but still manage to keep the burning flame of their love and the devotion for the work they do, alive. Also, Clive Owen is probably one of the most underrated actors working in film today (rent CROUPIER now!!)

They better make this badass the next Bond, I swear to God. Clive was just about perfect in this movie and although Jolie’s performance was 'okay', I was turned off by her “goth” dark hair color and big lips. I don’t normally mind her lips so much, but for some reason they particularly stood out in this film and made me lose my concentration more than a few times (What am I talking about? That’s it, I’m signing on for Greenpeace). This movie will either be a hit or miss for you. I doubt there will be a middle ground. I have some friends (The Shootin’ Surgeon, namely) that told me it’s a dud and another who told me that she actually considered humanitarian work after seeing the film. Martin Campbell does a fine job at balancing a touching romantic story while maintaining the focus on some of the more important issues, particularly the effect corruption and war had on many of the poor and hungry innocents who were left standing in the political crossfire.
THE EXTRAS
Commentary Track by Director Campbell and Producer Lloyd Phillips: I'd feared these two Brits would be a little too uptight for my taste, but luckily the audio track is well paced and full of useful insight into the production.

Behind the Lines: The Making of BEYOND BORDERS, Part 1 (approx. 18 min.): This first part focuses on the parts of the production that were filmed in cities in Canada and Africa. The usual comments by the director, stars and various crew members are included in the feature as well as behind the scenes stuff on the filming of some scenes.

Behind the Lines: The Making of BEYOND BORDERS, Part 2 (approx. 18 min.): They continue to discuss the film sets, extras and film stock they used for the Ethiopian refugee camp and then take us on a journey to Thailand which was subbing for Cambodia in the film. I have no idea why they felt the need to separate these two "making of" features. But I do know that it pisses me off when they do that. They definitely lost some DVD extra feature points for that!!!

The Writing of BEYOND BORDERS: A Conversation with Screenwriter Caspian Tredwell-Owen. (approx. 7 min.): This was semi-interesting as I was curious as to what kind of research the writer did to write about this fairly complicated topic. This is worth checking out…

Angelina: Goodwill Ambassador (approx. 3 min.): If you didn't already know, Jolie is a UNHCR goodwill ambassador in real life. Angelina gives you the ins and outs of what she does for the organization and what they stand for. You see her interacting with the refugees and the children in these countries. She really loves doing this with her time. Good for her...she's a real class act!
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
I wouldn’t suggest this as purchase because I doubt I’ll ever have the desire to see this movie again, but it will make a decent rental if a couple of your favorites have already been checked out. Okay, maybe that isn’t the strongest endorsement, but considering the story and cover box of this film originally made me want to gag...it could’ve been a lot worse.
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