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Sahara [2005] (1 disc)

Director:Breck Eisner
Writer:James V. Hart
John C. Richards
Joshua Oppenheimer
Thomas Dean Donnelly
Composer:Clint Mansell
Length:124 minutes
(2 hours 4 minutes)
MPAA Rating:PG-13
Sorting Category:Action
Sorting Tub:Hotel
IMDB Rating:6.0/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating:38%
Amazon Rating:3.5/5 stars
User rating sites like above
are subject to change
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Synopsis: On the trail of a Civil War battleship, two explorers end up being chased by a ruthless dictator.

Reaction: Fun enough. It's not Indiana Jones but Zahn is fun and there are good action sequences.

Personal Rating: 7/10

Breck Eisner => Director
James V. Hart => Writer
John C. Richards => Writer
Joshua Oppenheimer => Writer
Thomas Dean Donnelly => Writer
Clint Mansell => Composer
Clive Cussler => Novel
Christopher Bello => Train Driver
Clint Dyer => Oshodi
Delroy Lindo => Carl
Empotoe Bosage => Pick Up Truck Guard
Glynn Turman => Dr. Frank Hopper
Jude Akuwidike => Imam
Lambert Wilson => Yves Massarde
Lennie James => General Zateb Kazim
Mark Aspinall => Lawyer
Matthew McConaughey => Dirk Pitt
Nicholas Beveney => Gunboat 1 Officer
Patrick Malahide => Ambassador Polidori
PenÚlope Cruz => Eva Rojas
Rainn Wilson => Rudi Gunn
Rakie Ayola => Mrs. Nwokolo
Robert Cavanah => Captain Tombs
Steve Zahn => Al Giordino
William H. Macy => Admiral Jim Sandecker

Random Trivia For This Title:

  • Matthew McConaughey had traveled through Mali on his own long before the film went into preproduction; his experiences and personal photographs were used to get the look and story down.
  • An actual full-scale model of the Texas was built for the film. After the 1865 sequence was filmed, it was dismantled and reassembled in Morocco.
  • When Dirk and Al talk about an incident in the past where they rode camels in Morocco, actors Matthew McConaughey and Steve Zahn are actually in the Moroccan desert (depicting Mali).
  • The fact that Al Giordino had some of the Admiral's cigars was an inside joke from the novels; he always seemed to have some no matter how carefully Admiral Sandecker kept them under lock and key.
  • To hawk the movie, Matthew McConaughey crossed the country in his Ford pickup, hauling an Airstream trailer with Sahara advertising. He stayed at trailer campsites and visited baseball stadiums during spring training.
  • In the opening scene of the movie, the camera sweeps across a series of newspaper clippings showcasing Dirk Pitt's accomplishments. If you watch closely you'll see two articles of note. One is an article about the raising of the Titanic. This is in reference to the Clive Cussler novel Raise the Titanic where Dirk Pitt brings the ship up (it was written several years before the real Titanic was found to be shattered beyond reach on the bottom of the ocean). The second article is about the discovery of the Oiseau Blanc. This plane was of French origin and was attempting to be the first plane to make a non-stop New York to Paris flight just weeks before Charles A. Lindbergh's successful journey. The plane left France and was never seen again, but several people in northern Maine claimed to have heard an airplane above the cloud cover at about the right time. Interestingly, in Cussler's Sea Hunters II, he describes how he and his real-life NUMA team of volunteers went searching for the Oiseau Blanc in the forests of Maine, but were unable to find it. He suggests that it likely went down in a large bog. Note that Lindbergh's flight is often mistaken for the first transatlantic flight, his was the first 'solo' transatlantic flight and the first flight from New York to Paris non-stop, but the first transatlantic flight was Alcock and Brown in a WWI Vickers Vimy bomber in 1919, almost eight years before. A flight from Newfoundland to Ireland.
  • The cast had a US Navy SEAL adviser for action sequences and weapon trainings.
  • The cast had camel-riding lessons during which they would have to ride the camel at full gallop for 90 minutes alongside a moving train.
  • At first, Hugh Jackman was close to signing for the role of Dirk Pitt, and as of Summer 2001, filming was proposed to begin by October of that year. However, due to the 9/11 attacks, filming was postponed. It was later delayed again when Jackman was busy with X2, and he eventually pulled out so that he could appear on Broadway in The Boy From Oz. Some time later, Tom Cruise was reported to be attached to star as Dirk Pitt, but those rumors were quickly squashed.