No Man's Land (2001 film)

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No Man's Land
Theatrical release poster
Directed byDanis Tanović
Written byDanis Tanović
Produced byCédomir Kolar
Marc Baschet
Frédérique Dumas-Zajdela
StarringBranko Đurić
Rene Bitorajac
Filip Šovagović
CinematographyWalther Vanden Ende
Edited byFrancesca Calvelli
Music byDanis Tanović
Man's Films
Studio Maj
Distributed byOcéan Films (France)
Rai Cinema (Italy)
Momentum Pictures (United Kingdom)
Release dates
  • 19 September 2001 (2001-09-19) (France)
  • 28 September 2001 (2001-09-28) (Italy)
  • 10 October 2001 (2001-10-10) (Belgium)
  • 6 November 2001 (2001-11-06) (Slovenia)
  • 17 May 2002 (2002-05-17) (United Kingdom)
Running time
98 minutes
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • France
  • Slovenia
  • United Kingdom
  • Belgium[2]
Budget€2 million
Box office$4,858,869[3]

No Man's Land (Serbo-Croatian: Ničija zemlja, Ничија земља) is a 2001 war film that is set in the midst of the Bosnian War. The film is a parable and marks the debut of Bosnian writer and director Danis Tanović. It is a co-production among companies in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Slovenia, Italy, France, Belgium, and the United Kingdom. The film first premiered on 19 September 2001 in France. It later won an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film in 2002.


During the Bosnian War, two wounded soldiers, a Bosniak named Čiki and a Bosnian Serb named Nino, are caught between their lines in no man's land. The two soldiers confront each other in a trench, where they wait for dark. Trading insults at first, they eventually begin to find some common ground. Confounding the situation is another wounded Bosniak soldier named Cera who wakes from unconsciousness. A land mine has been buried beneath him by the Bosnian Serbs; should he make any move, the mine will explode.

A French Army sergeant named Marchand, of the United Nations Protection Force (UNPROFOR), gets involved in an effort to help the three trapped soldiers, despite initial orders to the contrary by high command. UNPROFOR's mission in Bosnia is to guard humanitarian aid convoys, remain neutral, and act as a mere bystander. Fortunately, a British reporter arrives on scene, bringing media pressure to bear that moves the UN high command to swing into action to try to save the soldiers.

A row between the stressed out and fatigued Čiki and Nino gradually escalates even after being rescued. Eventually, Čiki shoots Nino and in turn is shot by a UN Peacekeeper. Meanwhile, it is discovered that the mine underneath Cera cannot be defused. The UN high command tries to save face; they lie, saying that Cera has been saved and they leave the area, along with the reporters and everyone else.

In reality, Cera is left alone and desolate in the trenches, still immobilized by the mine. Meanwhile, the UN commander has arranged false information to be passed to both Bosnian and Serb forces, in order to make them believe that their enemies will be trying to reoccupy the trench at night (which each side would try to counter with an artillery barrage that will presumably kill Cera and destroy the evidence).



Box office

The film had an estimated budget of €2,000,000. The film was a commercial success, earning $1,012,153 in the US & Canadian box office. In total, the film earned $4,858,869 worldwide.

Critical response

No Man's Land received positive reviews among critics and audiences. On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds a 93% approval rating based on 98 reviews, with an average rating of 7.80/10. The website's critics consensus reads, "Bleak and darkly humorous, No Man's Land vividly illustrates the absurdity of war."[4] Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, has assigned the film a score of 84 out of 100 based on 29 critic reviews, indicating "universal acclaim".[5] Prominent film critic Roger Ebert praised the film and cited it as a curiously beautiful film and rated 3.5 out of 4 stars.[6]


Some of the awards that the film won included:

See also


  1. ^ "No Man's Land - Trailer". Retrieved 4 May 2015.
  2. ^ "Catalog – Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon". American Film Institute. Retrieved 19 September 2022. Duration (in mins): 120/Countries: China, Taiwan, Hong Kong S.A.R., United States/Language: Mandarin
  3. ^ No Man's Land at Box Office Mojo
  4. ^ "No Man's Land - Rotten Tomatoes". Rotten Tomatoes.
  5. ^ "No Man's Land - Metacritic". Metacritic.
  6. ^ "No Man's Land review by Roger Ebert". Roger Ebert.
  7. ^ "Festival de Cannes: No Man's Land". Retrieved 17 October 2009.

External links