Crusading in Africa: Religion, Race, and Post-9/11 Intervention in Antoine Fuqua's Tears of the Sun (2003).

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    • Abstract:
      African American director Antoine Fuqua's Tears of the Sun, a 2003 war film made with US Navy cooperation, imagines the intervention of Navy SEALs in an ethnic cleansing being conducted against Christians by Nigerian Muslims. It is at once an exercise in black diasporic consciousness and an expression of American exceptionalism. The director aimed to raise awareness of contemporary African crises, but the picture is also the closest Hollywood combat cinema came in the immediate post-9/11 years to addressing and endorsing the polarizing discourse and militarism of the Bush administration. The film's use of reductive religious imagery, its weak box office return, and its generally hostile reception overseas expose its failure as a tool of diplomacy and reveal the waning ability of triumphalist Hollywood cinema to define or explain the 'War on Terror'. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
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