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1942, Nanjing (Nanking). Following a series of assassination attempts on officials of the Japanese-controlled puppet government, the Japanese spy chief gathers a group of suspects in a mansion house for questioning. A tense game of "cat and mouse" ensues as the Chinese code-breaker attempts to send out a crucial message while protecting his/her own identity. Written by
"The Message" (Feng Sheng) is a tremendously engrossing and entertaining thriller, seemingly right out of the 1940's film genre. The film delivers highest quality in production, set design, direction, soundtrack, screenplay, and most notably the incredible cast of actors. I viewed it while in China and was very impressed; just like its jigsaw puzzle of a story, the film's components fit tightly as well. "The Message" is a film for adults but contains a story that all should know for the sacrifice and heroism of those portrayed so well. This is a real victory for Chinese cinema, as the film outdistances all Hollywood productions I have viewed this year.
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