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Savior Reviews

Dennis Quaid takes a road trip through hell in this brutal yet gripping film set deep in the war-scarred mountains of Bosnia. The life of Joshua Rose (Quaid) -- an American working for the U.S. government in Paris -- is turned inside out when his wife (Nastassja Kinski) and son are killed in a terrorist bombing. Believing it the work of an Islamic extremist group, Josh enters a Parisian mosque, guns down a group of innocent worshipers, then escapes into the anonymity of the Foreign Legion. Six years later, Josh experiences hatred and retaliation on an even more catastrophic scale: Going by the name Guy, he finds himself fighting alongside Serbian forces in Bosnia, shooting soldiers and children in the closest thing he can find to hell on Earth. Stripped of his name, his national identity and his soul, Guy is given a chance to reconnect with the world of the living when he saves the lives of Vera (Natasa Ninkovic) -- a Serbian woman who was raped by her Muslim captors -- and her unwanted, half-Muslim infant, and tries to deliver them to safety. Written and directed by Peter Antonijevic, who was born in the former Yugoslavia, the film offers an extremely graphic depiction of wartime atrocities, and the constant stream of mutilation and death is difficult to stomach. But it's hardly gratuitous: The violence effectively jolts viewers out of the CNN stupor and into an even greater awareness of just how nasty this war got. Glassy-eyed and gruff, Quaid does a fairly good Sgt. Rock impersonation, but hits a convincingly anguished note when called upon to do so. The film, however, belongs to Ninkovic and the otherworldly Balkan landscape: Both convey a sense of senselessly wrecked life and beauty that's entirely heartbreaking.