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Saturday, November 21, 2015

Movie Review: The Flowers of War

Christian Bale plays an accidental hero named John Miller in this film set during the fall of Nanking in 1937. As the Japanese troops march in and take over the city, Miller, an America mortician and drunkard finds refuge in a church with a group of school girls. They are later joined by a group of prostitutes from the nearby red light district.

The events in this exciting and tragic tale are based on actual events, but the story is quite fantastic so I wonder how much poetic licence has been taken. Nevertheless, it is a compelling and tragic tale with another wonderful performance by Bale.

Rated MA, the advisory says it features strong violence which in my view is a bit of an understatement, and it also contains rape scenes which I couldn't watch. The Flowers of War is in English, Japanese and Chinese (with English subtitles for the latter two) and is a suspenseful, shocking and heart warming film.

Watching it gave me some understanding of the historical antipathy of the Chinese people to the Japanese.

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