In No Man’s Land, Danis Tanovi´’s blunt, satiric yowl against everything ludicrous and harrowing about war, all battle comes down to the blackly absurd situation of mortal enemies trapped together in a trench. Stranded between lines with no will either to retreat or to cooperate, Ciki (Branko Djuri´) and Nino (Rene Bitorajac), a Bosnian and a Serb, are ready to kill each other at any time. And what they don’t do may soon be accomplished by Cera (Filip Sovagovi´), a wounded man lying nearby on a spring-loaded mine. Grudging attempts by a U.N. official (Simon Callow) to ”help” only make the situation worse; so does the self-involved interest of a war correspondent played with bite and ardor by Katrin Cartlidge.

This forceful Samuel Beckett-like drama is itself spring-loaded: It’s a merciless and mirthlessly funny antiwar weapon from a filmmaker who has seen battle firsthand and has lived to make art from memories of hell. B+

No Man's Land
  • Movie
  • 98 minutes