American Sniper pulled from Baghdad cinema

'American Sniper' has been pulled from a Baghdad cinema after the government and viewers branded it as "insulting" towards Iraqis

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Bradley Cooper

Bradley Cooper

'American Sniper' has been pulled from a Baghdad cinema.

The film - which stars Bradley Cooper as US Navy SEAL Chris Kyle - has been taken off from the listings at the only cinema in Iraq's capital city after the government and viewers said the film "insults" Iraqis.

The cinema's manager, Fares Hilal, was warned by a senior official at the Ministry of Culture that there would be fines and chance of closure if he continued to screen the film.

He told The Washington Post newspaper: "He told me the film insults Iraqis.

"If we show it, we will be criticised. But if we don't, we lose money. A lot of people wanted to see this film."

Meanwhile, Bradley previously admitted that he was "surprised" by the controversy surrounding the Clint Eastwood-directed film.

He said: "You never know when you make a movie if anybody's going to see it, so to have the audacity to think that it would cause any sort of effect at all would be pretty presumptuous.

"Any discussion that sheds light on the plight of the soldiers and the men and women in the armed services, for that discussion to occur is fantastic."

American Sniper

  • 3 stars
  • 2014
  • US
  • 134 min
  • 15
  • Directed by: Clint Eastwood
  • Cast: Bradley Cooper, Sienna Miller, Jake McDorman
  • UK release: 16 January 2015

Eastwood, noted for his kinship with the common soldier, is the ideal director for this true-life drama based on the autobiography of Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle (Cooper). Cooper continues to be impressive but the film unravels when it shows Kyle's home life, failing to engage with either marital or wider political issues.

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