When U.S. Rangers and an elite Delta Force team attempt to kidnap two underlings of a Somali warlord, their Black Hawk helicopters are shot down, and the Americans suffer heavy casualties, facing intense fighting from the militia on the ground.
Black Hawk Down (Movie)
Working from an adaptation of Mark Burden's account of a failed United States military mission in Mogadishu, Somalia, Ridley Scott achieves prodigious visual schemes; he's so gifted he seems to be inventing new colors on the spot. But his eye and the producer Jerry Bruckheimer's bluntness turn the material into an empty, muddled piece of high-contrast jingoism that leaves the Africans – and the Americans – so undifferentiated that it verges on racism. Sam Shepard plays the commander who smokes only to create atmosphere; his Montecristo No. 2's have as much character as the actors. – Elvis Mitchell