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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly engrossing
On paper this film sounds terrible. Rich London socialite Angaline Jolieis newly married when the pleas from an aid worker inspire her to travelto Ethiopa and help the starving. Yawn !!! I encountered this movie ona 12 hour flight with no intention of watching it. Except that whilechannel flicking I repeatedly found myself transfixed by the images onscreen. In the...
Published on 23 April 2004

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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars suprising
I was standing at my local video store looking for something to watch. I got this film out as a last resort and was hugely suprised by how good it was. Now i'm not talking oscar here, but it was compelling. I admire Jolie because she is clearly using this film as a way of highlighting the world issues she spends so much of her free time pioneering for. The love...
Published on 20 Aug. 2004 by Tatiana


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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly engrossing, 23 April 2004
By A Customer
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On paper this film sounds terrible. Rich London socialite Angaline Jolieis newly married when the pleas from an aid worker inspire her to travelto Ethiopa and help the starving. Yawn !!! I encountered this movie ona 12 hour flight with no intention of watching it. Except that whilechannel flicking I repeatedly found myself transfixed by the images onscreen. In the end I just had to watch it fully from start to finish. Iwasn't disappointed.
There are moments of cinamatography that are haunting and beautiful andstick clearly in your mind. There are moments of dramatic tension thathypnotise you. I'm not a Jolie fan but she does a surprisinlygood job as someone who doesn't have a clue but has a determination tolearn. In reality however it is the story and the way it is told whichpull you in.
The story does loses itself a little towards the end. But that takesnothing away from the movie as a whole. Highly recommended.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very moving, 4 Sept. 2005
This review is from: Beyond Borders [DVD] (DVD)
I loved the poignancy of this film. It is beautiful, shocking, informative and very sad (be warned!). If you liked The English Patient or Dr Zhivago, you'll surely like this. The romance between the two lead characters is somewhat predictable and Angelina Jolie's perfect looks in all scenes a little disbelievable, but that's Hollywood for you. Those minor points aside, this is a must-watch film to open your eyes and tug on your heart-strings. Once seen, you'll find it hard to shake out of your head.
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28 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic!, 15 Jan. 2005
By 
G. Stephens "Blah, blah, blah" - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Beyond Borders [DVD] (DVD)
This is a truly great film exploring the horrors of life on the field- Jolie and Owen's characters are inspirational. Especially for Angelina Jolie this film is exceptionally personal as it rings an autobiographical touch- she has spoken of her previous ignorance of these vital issues and actively sought to change the world through her work with the UN. The film is touching and throughout, you know how much passion came into the making of it- since Hollywood is usually allergic to themes of world poverty. I really enjoyed this film and would highly recommend it.
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars OPEN YOUR EYES, 25 May 2005
By A Customer
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This review is from: Beyond Borders [DVD] (DVD)
I saw the trailer for this in the cinema but 'Beyond Borders' surprisingly went straight to DVD - I would have gone to see it just because Angelina Jolie was in it and the story seemed interesting and intelligent. I thought I'd write a review to help get the word out but there are already over 50 reviews on amazon.com (USA) - the word is very much out! The point of the film is to make us think about what's happening outside our comfortable world (as represented by Angelina's character). This compelling film takes us to some war torn dangerous countries and shows us a little of the nightmare world of refugees as well some of the dangerous work of international organisations such as the United Nations and the International Red Cross - not seen very often. There's a romantic sub-plot and enough action to limit the risk of information fatigue. I was very impressed and moved by this film. I've grown used to Bob Geldof's abusive rants (the Clive Owen character is a ranter too) but the star power of Angelina and Clive - I wouldn't have watched it otherwise - has made me see things in a different way. It opened my eyes. For that I give it 5 stars. The thoughtful DVD extras are good too.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An epic drama, 8 July 2005
By 
Francisco (Newcastle upon Tyne, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Beyond Borders [DVD] (DVD)
Sarah has just married and is feeling on top of the world. Her husband is from a rich family whose charitable foundation has cut off money to a project in Ethopia. When Sarah learns of this she uses her own savings to travel to there and get aid to the camp concerned. Nick, the cynical doctor who runs the camp, resents Sarah's presence at first.
The film spans 20 years or so (1984 to 2003) and is split between London and a few places we've seen on the news in recent years. It is lots of things: a romance similar in the tradition of Romancing the Stone (but without the humour), a drama about a woman in a loveless marriage and an examination around the issues of refugees and aid in foreign countries (including the offer made by the mysterious Steiger).
In a way, the film is an appeal for people to remember those in troubled parts of world but is cynical rather than preachy. Sarah is the young idealistic one and Nick is the cynic to get the job done.
The film is slow in places but most of the time the plot keeps moving. I am glad I saw it on DVD as, in some parts, the speech is indistinct and I had to switch on subtitles to catch what was being said.
If you like films like Doctor Zhiavago(sp?) and The Way We Were then you'll probably like this.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very gripping, 6 Sept. 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Beyond Borders [DVD] (DVD)
It's a really good film looking at the area of humanitarian relief and world problems, and is also very moving character-wise. There is real chemistry between the two protagonists and it is very sad and also very sweet. It certainly made me think and it's great that it wasn't the usual Hollywood rubbish.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It is hard to have a romance when people are suffering, 5 Sept. 2005
By 
Lawrance Bernabo (The Zenith City, Duluth, Minnesota) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Beyond Borders [DVD] (DVD)
When there have been dozens of movies made about the Holocaust you can get to the point where you can tell the story of a romance set against such horrors as Robert Benigni did in "La Vita è bella. But when you are first showing a world of horror like that in the movies you cannot try and tell a romance against such a backdrop. More to the point, you should not try, and that is the fatal flaw with "Beyond Borders," which will constitute many viewers introductions to the major disasters and wars around the world that international disaster relief works have tried to deal with in the last two decades.
Granted, it is the stars of the film and not the subject matter that will get people to watch the movie. Originally "Beyond Borders" was going to be directed by Oliver Stone and star Kevin Costner and Catherine Zeta-Jones. What they ended up with is director Martin Campbell ("Vertical Limit"), Clive Owen ("Gosford Park") and Angelina Jolie ("Tomb Raider"). When this film was made that would be considered pretty much a drop down across the board (Owen had yet to make "Arthur"), but the fault is not to be found in either the director or the actors. Certainly Jolie is at home here, because even those wearing their Team Aniston t-shirts have to admit that as a good will ambassador for the UNHCR the actress has walked the walk. She was the first recipient of the Citizen of the World Award from the UN's Correspondents' Association for her work, made an honorary citizen of Cambodia for her humanitarian work there, and the tabloids covered her adoption of a newborn baby girl from Ethiopia who was left orphaned by AIDS. No, the problem is with the decision in the script by first time scripter Caspian Tredwell-Owen to go with a romance between the two.
The story is told in three major acts, each representing a major disaster in a different time and place. The first is the Ethiopia famine in 1984, the second is set in the Cambodia of the Khmer Rouge in 1989, and the final is the Chechnya of 1995. These major sequences, shot on location, are sandwiched between scenes in London of the family life that Sarah Jordan (Jolie) leaves behind when she goes off to help Nick Callahan (Owen) to try and save the sick and dying. The film starts off with what we take to be the "present," as Sarah plays Schumann's "Traumerei" on the piano. Clearly this is going to be a sad tale. When then go back to a fund raising party in London in 1984 that Sarah was attending with her husband, Henry Bauford (Linus Roache), and journalist sister, Charlotte Jordan (Teri Polo). The evening's festitivites are interrupted when Callahan storms in with a young Ethiopian boy demanding to know why his funding has been cut off.
I thought the first third of "Beyond Borders" was pretty memorable. Callahan dresses down the crowd in a profane but pointed manner, and when there is a pathetic rejoinder to his barbs he turns it around to really shame them. Sarah is profoundly affected by what happens, both there and afterwards, and decides to drop everything in her life and use all of the money she can get her hands on to fund a relief convoy to Callahan's camp in Ethiopia. There she is given a rude introduction to the horrors of the famine and her efforts are rudely dismissed by Callahan. But Sarah has spunk, or at least a heart in the right place, and she is able to help, which, after all, is what you would think this would all be about in the end. But I should have known when in middle of a relief camp in the middle of the Ethiopian desert Sarah finds a piano to play, that this 2003 film was going to go in the wrong direction.
Here is where I think the movie makes a mistake, because when the supplies run out, Sarah goes home. She and Callahan have established the beginning of a relationship, not just because they have been butting heads but because of a pointed conversation where she demands to know why he never uses her name (and he has a good reason). The idea is that their two paths will cross at the other times and in the other places and their romance will progress. It is just that I find the idea of the romance unnecessary at best. What international disaster relief operatives have to do to not just try and get the job done but to survive is fascinating by itself, as the second act in Cambodia amply proves. Besides, I am much more interested in the rest of Callahan's group, such as Elliott Hauser (Noah Emmerich), than the sparks between Sarah and Callahan. By the time we get to the final act in Checnya, the film is reduced to those two and the relief effort is barely in the background.
The other problem with the last act is that it is telegraphed. When a movie stops so a driver can explain his artifical leg and the climax takes place in Checnya, you have to see the ending coming (especially with the red herring of the opening piano piece). Overall I give the Ethiopia part a 5, the Cambodia part a 4, and the interludes and the Checnya part a 3. That averages out to a 4, but "Beyond Borders" deserves that simply because although the romance takes over the movie in the end, the human misery depicted is not easy to forget and that is worth something. Plus, I appreciate the idea that when people are starving to death there is a point where it does not matter than there are people with guns trying to tell you want to do.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Film, 7 Feb. 2010
By 
R. Spencer (uk) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Beyond Borders [DVD] (DVD)
I'm a massive Angelina fan so she can't go far wrong in my eyes. The story is good and alerts you to the problems facing other countries and those who try to help there. A good performace by Clive Owen also. If you're looking for a feel good film you won't get it here but for a film that makes you think beyond your own every day existance then watch this.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Beyond Borders, 22 Sept. 2009
By 
Ian W. Gordon (Edinburgh, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Beyond Borders [DVD] (DVD)
It's a really good film looking at the area of humanitarian relief and world problems

It is also very moving character-wise. There is real chemistry between the two protagonists and it is very sad and also very sweet although a bit predictable.

It will certainly made you think and it's great that it wasn't the usual Hollywood rubbish.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Love Denied, 11 Dec. 2010
By 
Alyson Montemagno (Hawaii) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Beyond Borders [DVD] (DVD)
This isn't an A+ movie, but there is something about it, that keeps drawing you to it. Of course, the theme, of third world countries' suffering and lack of help, the scandal of governments and the atrocities are all true and made very realistic.

The acting by the excellent Clive Owen, Angelina Jolie and others in smaller roles, whose names I don't even know, were magnificent I thought. The scenery, not shot on location was all so very real. I thought the screenplay was excellent, the story starting and moving forward, and a beautiful, denied love story. I think the choice of Owen and Jolie was superb, that you really believed them and forgot they were characters acting. I don't think that any actor, except Clive Owen, in his craft, could have looked at his daughter that way, at the end.

I only wish it was made from a book, I could have read first, to feel their inner most feelings.
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Beyond Borders [DVD] by Martin Campbell (DVD - 2004)
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