6.7/10
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7 user 4 critic

Prisoners of the Sun (1990)

Blood Oath (original title)
R | | Drama, War | 26 July 1990 (USA)
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1:49 | Trailer
The island of Ambon in Indonesia, 1945. During the War, the number of Australian POWs on the island had dropped from 1100 to less than 300 due to abuses by their Japanese captors. Capt. ... See full summary »

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(screenplay), (screenplay)
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2 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Captain Cooper
...
Vice-Admiral Baron Takahashi
...
Major Beckett
...
Major Roberts
Toshi Shioya ...
Lt. Tanaka
John Clarke ...
Sheedy
...
Sister Littell (as Deborah Unger)
...
Private Jimmy Fenton
...
Lt. Corbett
Nicholas Eadie ...
Sgt. Keenan
Jason Donovan ...
Private Talbot
Tetsu Watanabe ...
Captain Ikeuchi
Sokyu Fujita ...
Mr. Matsugae
...
President of the Bench
Kazuhiro Muroyama ...
Lt. Noburo Kamura
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Storyline

The island of Ambon in Indonesia, 1945. During the War, the number of Australian POWs on the island had dropped from 1100 to less than 300 due to abuses by their Japanese captors. Capt. Cooper is the chief prosecutor. In a mass grave, the bodies of 300 executed servicemen have been unearthed. Cooper assumes that the massacre was ordered by Baron Takahashi, Japanese commander on Ambon. But the one potential witness has gone mad and is due to be shipped back to Australia. No captured airmen were found alive on the island at all, not even the four-man crew of a reconnaissance plane shot down late in the War. Takahashi is returned to the island in the custody of an American officer, Maj. Beckett. But there is little evidence with which to prosecute the Baron. Cooper thinks he could make a case for the missing airmen if only their bodies could be located. And why does Maj. Beckett appear interested in not seeing Takahashi convicted? Cooper gets a break when Lt. Tanaka, a communications ... Written by David Stanko

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A journey from blind justice to soaring compassion [Australia theatrical] See more »

Genres:

Drama | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for momentary strong violence | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

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Release Date:

26 July 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Prisoners of the Sun  »

Filming Locations:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The composition of the execution shot is based on a photo of the execution of an Australian soldier, Sergeant Leonard Siffleet. The photo was found in the possessions of a dead Japanese soldier. The original was published in LIFE magazine and can be seen on the Australian War memorial website (collections ID number 101099). See more »

Quotes

Vice-Admiral Baron Takahashi: [referring to executed prisoners] I know nothing... about these men.
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User Reviews

 
Closed in by inherent limitations, but very well-acted and structured.
13 November 2008 | by (Nova Scotia, Canada) – See all my reviews

There's an underlying factor about the design of a film like "Prisoners of the Sun" that doesn't allow for much leeway or originality. Much like similar films in this vein, the clichéd factors are unavoidable. There's to be the prosecutor with anger issues, the stoic (and typically un-convictable) evil leader, and finally, the sacrificial lamb.

So, as it is with "Breaker Morant", the quality lies directly with those actors involved. Don't be fooled by Russell Crowe's recent high billing - he is certainly not a star. In fact, he is very nearly unnoticeable amidst the larger happenings around him. The main standout performances belong to Bryan Brown and John Polson. Polson, certainly, gives a lot to the role. He is broken, nervous and jumpy, and highly convincing.

The development is rather predictable, I suppose, but the acting manages to carry it through. Overall, this is a good film - not great, but well considered.

RATING: 6.9 out of 10


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