Based upon the final confession of Adolf Eichmann, made before his execution in Israel as he accounts to Captain Avner Less, a young Israeli Police Officer, of his past as the architect of ... See full summary »
Avner W. Less,
After 28 years building and managing a vast Siemens plant in Nanking, John Rabe is ordered by the new Nazi regime to close it down. Before he can pack, the Japanese army, lead unofficially by a bloodthirsty imperial uncle, lays siege to the city. Rabe accepts, as prominent representative of Japans' major European ally, to head the Western ex-pats society's plan to start and run an international zone, like worked in Shangai. Rabe however wants it to save his workers and their close ones, over 200,000, and sacrifices all his personal interests. Written by
Several Japanese actors when approached immediately turned down any suggestion about appearing in the film. The Nanking massacre still touches a raw nerve in Japan today and for some Japanese actors the thought of appearing in a film about it was beyond comprehension. See more »
The USS Panay is shown as a passenger ship when she was in fact a U.S. Navy River Gunboat. The movie shows the Panay being attacked within sight of Nanking (now known as Nanjing) but in reality it had moved 28 miles upriver and dropped anchor, along with three Standard Oil tankers. The attack lasted for 2.5 hours until the ship finally sunk. The attack left 3 sailors dead, 43 sailors and 5 civilians wounded. See more »
I have just watched the movie 'John Rabe' three days ago at the Berlin International Film Festival. Fortunately the director was present and kind enough to answer some questions after the screening. Thank you for that.
The movie itself is about the extraordinary achievements of the then director of Siemens Naking, John Rabe, who saved several thousand Chinese people during the Japanese assault on, and capture of the city in 1937/38.
There certainly are several similarities to the case of Oscar Schindler, whose story is well documented and was made into a movie by Steven Spielberg, but those similarities are due to the story, and not because of any semblances of the two movies...
Nevertheless, the most innovative and interesting aspect of the movie 'John Rabe' is the story, which is about this extraordinary person. The movie itself, and that's really unfortunate, is partially too declamatory and rather kitschy in some parts. Some scenes actually reminded me of sad experiences such as the movie 'Pearl Harbor'. This critique may sound a little harsh, because on the whole the movie isn't too bad, but I still think it should be mentioned.
Now, if you are able to take some kitschy love scenes and some heroic moments, you might actually enjoy this movie and be able to discover a very interesting and less known story about the Second World War...
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