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The Kingdom

Director Peter Berg’s movie has none of “Syriana’s” erudition and little of “Black Hawk Down’s” true grit, but that may be unimportant. This is a Middle East Western (a growing subgenre) funneled through a “Die Hard” filter. Terrorist black hats detonate a car bomb in fortified Saudi compound populated by American oil company employees. Cometh the white-hatted FBI (Jamie Foxx, Jennifer Garner, Chris Cooper and Jason Bateman).

The experts ignore the smarmy local sheriff, in the person of diplomat Jeremy Piven, and get down and dirty (yet their hearts also bleed). Call this a protest movie — oil-grabbing self-interest ails the “kingdom” — but when all’s said and explosively done we’re in action flick with foreignness as a go-team lubricant. A few good men (and a girl) may not be able to right the wrongs, but they’re not gun-shy either. Surprise, surprise.