2010s

Published on October 10th, 2012 | by Chris

0

The Flowers of War (2011)

Movie by :
Yimou Zhang

Reviewed by:
Rating:
3
On October 10, 2012
Last modified:October 10, 2012

Summary:

A harrowing tale of survival in Nanking, China under Japanese occupation in 1937.


Flowers of War (2011)The Flowers of War is a rather harrowing picture set in 1937 Nanking under Japanese occupation. It follows the story of one John Miller (Christian Bale), an undertaker who has arrived to bury the priest at the local Catholic church-slash-orphanage.  Unfortunately the mechanism of his death has left no body to deal with, only a houseful of orphaned Chinese girls and one boy.

He finds himself taking on the persona of a replacement priest in order to protect the orphans from the Japanese.  Add to this mix the arrival of a group of prostitutes, initially a godsend for Mr. Miller, but who prove to almost be more trouble than they're worth hanging onto.

Eventually the "ladies" realize that they have a duty to fulfill, in order to get the children out of the city and to safety.  (No spoilers, so that's as much as I can tell you!)

I found this to be a pretty good film overall.  Not nearly as moving and soul-crushing as City of Life and Death (or as good) but still an excellent tale of survival, duty, and humanity in a time of desperation.  Mr. Bale once more proves his mettle as an actor, displaying initial depravity and indifference, yet eventually moving towards realization of the situation.  The scene on the staircase (no spoilers!!) is particularly hard.

There is a combat scene involving one of a pair of Chinese soldiers (the other, dying one, taken care of by the "ladies") that is especially creative and well executed.  The Japanese are predictably (and rightfully so) portrayed as cruel animals.  There is another sequence in particular which keeps this movie well away from any PG-13 rating, and is incredibly painful to get through.  The opening battle scene is definitely impressive, and sets the tone for the entire film.

The children playing the orphans are also well suited to the task.  Displaying a wide range of emotion under immense pressure....

Another "story that needs to be told" movie, The Flowers of War is an excellent film.  Not a combat-heavy movie, but a story that needs to be told.

IMDB: The Flowers of War (2011)

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Description

The film, set during the Japanese invasion of China, is told from a young girl's point of view, not as a history lesson, but as an intimate, elemental and paradoxically universal celebration of the human spirit...

DVD Information

Binding: Blu-ray
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
Audience Rating: R (Restricted)
Brand: LIONS GATE HOME ENT.
Manufacturer: Lionsgate
Original Release Date:
Actors:
  • Christian Bale
  • Ni Ni
  • Xinyi Zhang
  • Tianyuan Huang
  • Xiting Han

Features

  • Region A/1
  • Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, Closed-captioned, DTS Surround Sound, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • 146 minutes
  • R
  • English & Cantonese, English, Spanish Subtitles

Reviews

Customer Reviews
Average Customer Review

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I loved this movie, March 10, 2016
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: The Flowers Of War (Amazon Video)
I loved this movie, this was done amazing. I know much about the history here because I speak to Chinese people who live in China and this is truly something passed down through generations. I have also read much about the things done during this timeframe to the Chinese People (including young women / age 10 through 15) by the Japanese Soldiers and many things are pure crimes in my book. I apologies to anyone who is Japanese, I am sorry for anyone who is Chinese (war is ugly), but so glad America and Allies stepped in (2nd world war) and ended what might have been.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Flowers of War, November 25, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: The Flowers Of War (Amazon Video)
This film is one of the most dramatic war films ever put on film. Never thought that I would ever purchase a foreign war film.The acting is superb. You must watch it with the subtitles, in order, to appreciate the acting of all the characters. This film deserves a special place on your movie collection shelf. It shows the savagery of what took place in China during World War 2, and the horrors of war. A high budgeted film. As for Christian Bale, great acting by a great actor, supported by tremendous acting by all supporting actors. Remember, don't watch the dubbed version. Appreciate the full impact of the film as it was meant to be seen.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Flowers of War is an excellent movie but is very sad, January 30, 2017
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: The Flowers of War (DVD)
The Flowers of War is an excellent movie but is very sad. The movie is about school girls and prostitutes caught up in the Japanese Invasion of China. The movie was inspired by the diary of one of the school girls. The movie is a must for everyone to view. All the actors portrayed their roles with perfection. If there were more than 5 rating stars, I defiantly would give the movie, The Flowers of War, more rating stars. I bought 3 more "The Flowers of War movies" to give my friends. After watching the movie, I bought The Flowers of War novel from Amazon.
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The Flowers of War (2011) Chris

Summary: A harrowing tale of survival in Nanking, China under Japanese occupation in 1937.

3.0


User Rating: 0 (0 votes)

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About the Author

I've been watching war movies for probably 25 years now. Since December 2006 I've been sharing my habit and passion for these movies here on this site.



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