When a terrorist bomb detonates inside a Western housing compound in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, an international incident is ignited. While diplomats slowly debate equations of territorialism, FBI Special Agent Ronald Fleury (Foxx) quickly assembles an elite team (Oscar® winner Chris Cooper and Golden Globe winners Jennifer Garner and Jason Bateman) and negotiates a secret five-day trip into Saudi Arabia to locate the madman behind the bombing.
Upon landing in the desert kingdom, however, Fleury and his team discover Saudi authorities suspicious and unwelcoming of American interlopers into what they consider a local matter. Hamstrung by protocol-and with the clock ticking on their five days-the FBI agents find their expertise worthless without the trust of their Saudi counterparts, who want to locate the terrorist in their homeland on their own terms.
“The Kingdom,” is a powerfully moving story dealing with the United States presence in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia. When a coordinated attack leaves over two hundred US citizens dead in Saudi Arabia, a FBI strike team is able to get permission through back channels to investigate the incident. However, local and national politics are heavily in play, hindering the investigation. Startling revelations are made, leaving the strike team in grave danger while they struggle to bring the people responsible to justice.
This film illuminates the plight of three groups of people: the Americans, the traditional Saudi Arabians, who wage attacks, and the modern Saudi Arabians, a group caught in the middle that desires peace and understanding. Many of the scenes were violent, and while it lent an air of realism to what is actually happening in our world, the violence level crosses our acceptability level for a family film. During one particular scene, I could have sworn I smelled the gunpowder. Many of the scenes were disturbing, but it was due to the fact that you couldn’t help but wonder if this same scene was being reenacted somewhere in the world as you sat in the theater. This is a powerful film that really made you think afterwards. We were unable to award the Dove Family-Approved Seal due to the levels of violence and language. Some mature themes are covered.