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Emperor (2012)

 -  Drama | History  -  27 July 2013 (Japan)
6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 7,546 users   Metascore: 48/100
Reviews: 41 user | 85 critic | 33 from Metacritic.com

As the Japanese surrender at the end of WWII, Gen. Fellers is tasked with deciding if Emperor Hirohito will be hanged as a war criminal. Influencing his ruling is his quest to find Aya, an exchange student he met years earlier in the U.S.

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(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Title: Emperor (2012)

Emperor (2012) on IMDb 6.5/10

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Toshiyuki Nishida ...
Masayoshi Haneda ...
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Masatoshi Nakamura ...
Masatô Ibu ...
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Takatarô Kataoka ...
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Lt Col. Rogers
Nic Sampson ...
Lieutenant Red
Shôhei Hino ...
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CIC Commander
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Storyline

A story of love and understanding set amidst the tensions and uncertainties of the days immediately following the Japanese surrender at the end of World War II. On the staff of General Douglas MacArthur (Jones), the de facto ruler of Japan as Supreme Commander of the occupying forces, a leading Japanese expert, General Bonner Fellers (Fox) is charged with reaching a decision of historical importance: should Emperor Hirohito be tried and hanged as a war criminal? Interwoven is the story of Fellers' love affair with Aya, a Japanese exchange student he had met years previously in the U.S. Memories of Aya and his quest to find her in the ravaged post-war landscape help Fellers to discover both his wisdom and his humanity and enable him to come to the momentous decision that changed the course of history and the future of two nations. Written by Production

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Japan 1945: General Douglas MacArthur was given a mission to decide the fate of a nation, the guilt of a leader, and the true price of peace.

Genres:

Drama | History

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violent content, brief strong language and smoking (historical) | See all certifications »

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Details

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Language:

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Release Date:

27 July 2013 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

A háború császára  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$1,014,134 (USA) (8 March 2013)

Gross:

$3,345,315 (USA) (7 June 2013)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The romantic story between Fellers and Aya was entirely fictional for the film. Fellers was married in 1925 to Dorothy Dysart who accompanied him twice on his posting the Phillipines, and she also went with him to China and Japan. See more »

Goofs

In the close up on General Feller's typewriter upon which he is writing his initial report to MacArthur, he is seen typing "Pearl Harbour", using the British spelling. An American general would have used the American spelling and typed "Pearl Harbor". See more »

Quotes

General Douglas MacArthur: Gentlemen, we will take no weapons with us when we step off this airplane. Nothing will impress them more than a show of absolute fearlessness. If they don't know they're licked by now, they will get the picture today. Now let's show them some good old-fashioned American swagger.
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User Reviews

 
An enjoyable, if a bit dry, historical film
14 September 2012 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

Just saw Emperor at TIFF tonight. It was an enjoyable, well made, historical film, but a tad dry. Starring Tommy Lee Jones as General Douglas MacArthur and Matthew Fox as MacArthur's subordinate officer General Fellers, it is set against the backdrop of the early occupation of Japan by U.S. forces after World War 2. MacArthur is faced with a dilemma: he has to prosecute thirty Japanese war criminals - the masterminds of the war - but a question of what to do with Emperor Hirohito looms over him. To leave him alone would invite displeasure from American public and politicians, to arrest and try him for war crimes would endanger the occupation and break the tenuous peace. Jones' MacArthur assigns the task to Matthew Fox's character as he is an expert on Japan - now Fox's character has only 10 days to investigate the Emperor's involvement and come to a decision. In the meantime, the viewers also see flashbacks from Fellers' past, and there is a subplot involving Feller looking for his lost lover.

Tommy Lee Jones is plainly having lots of fun as the blustering larger- than-life Douglas MacArthur, and Matthew Fox delivers a good performance with moments of extreme intensity. Masayoshi Haneda plays a translator and aide and manages to pull off a role that has dignity despite the harrowed and dishevelled appearance of the character. Eriko Hatsune - the love interest of the film - has a fragile beauty but is too reserved throughout the movie to deliver much of an emotional impact. The film was shot in New Zealand and Japan (in fact it's the first movie to film inside the Japanese Imperial Palace) and it's gorgeous - the ruins of bombed out Tokyo are especially impressive, and of course the Imperial Palace as a backdrop is fascinating.

The quibble I had with the movie is that it tries to create a sense of urgency and suspense, but since it's based on historical events it largely fails. Anyone who has taken history in high school should know how it turned out. With the exception of a couple of scenes, there also isn't much of an emotionally charged drama going on either. Although I enjoyed it, I cannot deny that it moved at a more sedate pace and lacked great urgency and suspense.


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Message Boards

Recent Posts
I hope this is not another hollywood movie's compassion for Japanese swet531
If Hirohito was tried for war crimes and executed Jonhny
Tommy Lee Jones as MacArthur jdoughty
Condition of Japan’s surrender? yumatom
Same Bonner Fellers who was the best intelligence resource for Nazis ? merdiolu
Emperor Review vedder99
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