Down 1,794 this week

The War Zone (1999)

R  |   |  Drama  |  11 June 1999 (Italy)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.4/10 from 7,782 users   Metascore: 68/100
Reviews: 130 user | 90 critic | 21 from

An alienated teenager, saddened that he has moved away from London, must find a way to deal with a dark family secret.



(novel), (screenplay)
0Check in

On Disc

at Amazon

TV Spotlight: The Top 10 Episodes of "The Walking Dead"

We've curated a list of the top 10 episodes of "The Walking Dead" according to the IMDb user ratings.

Read More

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 34 titles
created 02 Dec 2010
a list of 45 titles
created 09 Apr 2012
a list of 45 titles
created 30 Jun 2012
a list of 40 titles
created 21 Sep 2012
a list of 31 titles
created 10 Nov 2012

Related Items

Search for "The War Zone" on

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: The War Zone (1999)

The War Zone (1999) on IMDb 7.4/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The War Zone.

User Polls

9 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Nil by Mouth (1997)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The family of Raymond, his wife Val and her brother Billy live in working-class London district. Also in their family is Val and Billy's mother Janet and grandmother Kath. Billy is a drug ... See full summary »

Director: Gary Oldman
Stars: Ray Winstone, Kathy Burke, Charlie Creed-Miles
Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Finbar and Danny are close childhood friends who live in a depressing neighbourhood in an Irish town. Finbar gets the chance to play soccer in an international soccer team abroad but can't ... See full summary »

Director: Sue Clayton
Stars: Luke Griffin, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Sean Lawlor
Alpine Fire (1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A year on an Alpine farm: an older couple have two children, Belli, who wanted to be a teacher, and the younger Franzi, deaf, and although he works like a man, child-like. Belli teaches him... See full summary »

Director: Fredi M. Murer
Stars: Thomas Nock, Johanna Lier, Dorothea Moritz
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

After the death of her husband, the mother of Julie, Jack, Sue and Tom begins to suffer from a mysterious illness. Aware that she is going to have to go into hospital she opens a bank ... See full summary »

Director: Andrew Birkin
Stars: Charlotte Gainsbourg, Andrew Robertson, Alice Coulthard
Gemini (2005)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A domineering mother with a seemingly perfect family in Argentina is unaware of a taboo relationship happening with her youngest children.

Director: Albertina Carri
Stars: Cristina Banegas, Daniel Fanego, Maria Abadi
Close My Eyes (1991)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

After some years of tension, Richard begins a sexual relationship with his sister Natalie, who is now married. The relationship between Richard and Natalie proves dangerously obsessional. ... See full summary »

Director: Stephen Poliakoff
Stars: Alan Rickman, Clive Owen, Saskia Reeves
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Living in the rural Texas panhandle is a dysfunctional family: an abusive dad, a Vietnam vet with a war wound that's left him impotent; a compliant wife and a son of about 20, who have an ... See full summary »

Director: Antonio Tibaldi
Stars: Ryan Phillippe, Nastassja Kinski, John Savage
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

This is a story of a man (Walker), suffering from dwarfism, who writes an autobiographical account of his life. In flashbacks, we see how he was conceived to a woman (Parillaud) at the end ... See full summary »

Director: Michael Lindsay-Hogg
Stars: Matt Dillon, Anne Parillaud, Gabriel Byrne
Falling for a Dancer (TV Movie 1998)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Romantic drama set in rural Ireland of the 1930s. The story begins when 19-year-old Elizabeth has a brief fling with an actor and falls pregnant. Community pressure forces her to marry a ... See full summary »

Director: Richard Standeven
Stars: Elisabeth Dermot Walsh, Dermot Crowley, Liam Cunningham
War Zone (1998)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Bertolt Brecht lives! Maggie Hadleigh-West walks crowded urban streets carrying a video camera and microphone, trailed by one or two women also with cameras. Whenever a man harasses her, ... See full summary »

Director: Maggie Hadleigh-West
Stars: Maggie Hadleigh-West
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  

After failing school, 18 year old Irish leaves his small town of Kerry to find work. In London, he finds a job at an oil refinery and befriends a crude Scottish worker, but soon starts ... See full summary »

Director: Owen McPolin
Stars: Andrew Scott, James Quarton, Eva Birthistle

A social worker in New York takes an active role in saving children from dangerous situations at home.

Director: Tim Roth


Cast overview:
Freddie Cunliffe ...
Nick (as Colin J. Farrell)
Aisling O'Sullivan ...
Megan Thorp ...
Baby Alice


Tom (Freddie Cunliffe), an alienated 15 year old boy, finds the that opportunity for close observation of his father, after their move from London to rural Devon and the birth of a new baby, reveals a world run through with darkness and pain. Tom is unable to reconcile the life he's known what he sees with his own eyes, and blames his 18 year old sister, Jessie (Lara Belmont). Both Tom and Jessie struggle to find some path to truth and sanity as the human forces around them work in polarity with their isolation to either assist them, or destroy them. Written by John Sacksteder <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


When the worst of men hides in a family with no history.



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexual content, some involving molestation, and for nudity, language and a scene of violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:





Release Date:

11 June 1999 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Tim Roth's The War Zone  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$18,335 (USA) (10 December 1999)


$237,029 (USA) (31 March 2000)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


According to director Tim Roth, the bunker scene was so difficult to film that the sound man almost ruined a take by crying into his microphone. Ray Winstone also found acting the scene upsetting and nearly left the production because of it. See more »


Referenced in Dinner for Five: Episode #2.1 (2003) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Uncompromising drama that borders on voyeuristic at times
30 January 2002 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

A young family moves from London to a remote country house. The young son suspects that his sister and his father's relationship is more than it should be. As he looks more and more into it he finds a sinister element that his mother does not see.

This was Tim Roth's directorial debut and he certainly wasn't looking for a popcorn hit. The story by Alexander Stuart from his own novel is very slow and deliberate but is ruthlessly effective. At first the whole family seems to have a strange sexual edge to it - the mother breast feeds in full view, the teenage brother and sister lie naked in front of each other etc. It gives things a strange feel but it's quickly forgotten when you get used to it. The guts of the story revolves around the father's sexual abuse of his daughter Jessie, who no longer fights but accepts it as part of her life. Some of the scenes - in particular ‘the scene' - are too hard to watch and the whole thing is very powerful. The film develops slowly and does not allow the father to be a monster-type (the British media have a habit of demonising people rather than taking objective views). Here the film doesn't let him become a caricature even when his crimes come to light.

The cast are roundly brilliant. Winston plays it perfectly all the way and doesn't take the `monster' route. Freddie Cunliffe is excellent as Tom - although all he has to do is mope around the place. Lara Belmont is outstanding - this must have been so difficult to play but she is absolutely excellent throughout. Swinton is good as the mother, but her character is not well used or developed.

Overall it's very hard to watch. Roth's direction is a little too clever but is very good generally. A powerful story very well told - but it may not be to everyone's liking.

15 of 19 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
was the baby sexual interferred with irismcmurrough
In the last scene, what is the meaning of closing the bunker door? tripijb
anti-white propaganda judantis_vaizdas
More movie Recommendations ? winningi
understanding the daughter ron-o-1
Domestic Violence Lindz1986
Discuss The War Zone (1999) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: