The Siege

November 6, 1998 0 By Fans
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Still of Bruce Willis in The SiegeStill of Denzel Washington, Annette Bening and Tony Shalhoub in The SiegeStill of Denzel Washington in The SiegeEdward Zwick in The SiegeStill of Denzel Washington in The SiegeStill of Bruce Willis in The Siege


The secret US abduction of a suspected terrorist leads to a wave of terrorist attacks in New York that lead to the declaration of martial law.

Release Year: 1998

Rating: 6.2/10 (32,566 voted)

Critic's Score: 53/100

Edward Zwick

Stars: Denzel Washington, Bruce Willis, Annette Bening

After the abduction by the US military of an Islamic religious leader, New York City becomes the target of escalating terrorist attacks. Anthony Hubbard, the head of the FBI's Counter-Terrorism Task Force in New York, teams up with CIA operative Elise Kraft to hunt down the terrorist cells responsible for the attacks. As the bombings continue, the US government responds by declaring martial law, sending US troops, led by Gen. Devereaux, into the streets of New York City.

Writers: Lawrence Wright, Lawrence Wright


Denzel Washington

Anthony 'Hub' Hubbard

Annette Bening

Elise Kraft
Sharon Bridger

Bruce Willis

Major General William Devereaux

Tony Shalhoub

Agent Frank Haddad

Sami Bouajila

Samir Nazhde

Ahmed Ben Larby

Sheik Achmed Bin Talal

Mosleh Mohamed


Lianna Pai

Tina Osu

(as Liana Pai)

Mark Valley

FBI Agent Mike Johanssen

Jack Gwaltney

Fred Darius

David Proval

Danny Sussman

Lance Reddick

FBI Agent Floyd Rose

Jeremy Knaster

INS Official

William Hill

INS Uniform

Aasif Mandvi

Khalil Saleh

On November 6th our freedom is history

Release Date: 6 November 1998

Filming Locations: Brooklyn Heights, Brooklyn, New York City, New York, USA

Box Office Details

Budget: $70,000,000


Opening Weekend: $13,931,285
(8 November 1998)
(2541 Screens)

Gross: $40,932,372
(14 February 1999)

Technical Specs


Did You Know?


According to an interview that screenwriter Lawrence Wright gave to CBS in 2007, the film was a box office failure upon its theatrical release, "but it was the most-rented movie in America after 9/11." Wright also claimed that the initial release bombed because "Muslim and Arab protesters picketed the theaters. They were furious at being stereotyped as terrorists."


Factual errors:
Twice, General Devereaux refers to "the president invoking the War Powers Act." The WPA is not presidential authority for allow war or the use of the military (which comes from Congress), but it is in fact a rule passed by Congress in 1973 (after Vietnam) that severely limits a president's ability to unilaterally use military force without Congressional authorization.


You don't fight a junkyard dog with ASPCA rules. What you do is you take the leash off your bigger, meaner dog.

User Review

Still stands up

Rating: 7/10

I remember hearing about this film before its release. It had caught a
great deal of flack for its use of Arabs and Muslims in particular as
violent extremists. Even at that time I knew that the protests against
film were nothing more than politically correct nonsense, as even then
only trans-oceanic terrorists that existed were of the fake-Muslim
that today we hear about every hour.

When I saw the film, I was impressed by the fair nature of the film, in
it portrayed the truth: these extremists exist in the overwhelming
of Muslims, and that it is unwise and unfair to paint them all with the
brush. With a very good script, excellent performances and exciting
pieces, I was impressed.

Jump ahead a few years, and we see what we have learned. This film was
just an intelligent story. It was a warning sign. It examined things
people did not want to talk about. It examined things that people
it more politically correct to ignore. It portrayed events realistically
and in fact far less devastating than what was possible. If there is one
thing that can be learned by examining a film such as this in
of recent events, it is that our species chooses to ignore that which it
does not want to accept.

Those who do not learn from their history are doomed to repeat it.
there are other subjects we should stop being so PC about and actually
about instead of worrying about "how it will look."