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74 out of 90 people found the following review useful:
It is a touching movie, 19 December 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I am about 40 and have been watching movies for 25 years. I must say I am no a professional except knowing what movie moves me keeply. This movie comes from a huge and heavy background. My history teacher cried sadly when she gave me the class about the darkest time in Chinese Modern history. For those who give cold comments about the movie, I confessed I tried hard to hold my tears next to my wife in the movie theatre.

But the moment "little George" said: "there is no other way!" My salty tears kept rolling out! I hope people respect those victims and stopped saying this piece of history does not exist. There were brave American medicals and priests who risked their lives at that time to keep journals and photo about the crimes.

Apart from prejudice, I consider that this movie is very controlled in a lot of ways. For many educated Chinese, we all read a lot of documents/short films and photo that were amazingly made by the Japanese soldiers themselves for showing off and promoting a sense of fears at that time.

I am glad such scene is made in a very controlled yet enlighting manner. For a Chinese viewer, the burden to watch this movie is extremely heavy, especially before X'mas.

I am glad this story is told in a small angle that reflects part of the whole picture. Apart from the history, it is a good film. Those characters are not as complex as the original novel. But as a whole it shows how a normal/powerless person could choose to do in one of the worst moments in modern history. No one is born hero. In war time,life may not worth more than a bullet, regardless which social class one is in. This movie tells a good story and I appreciate the making of such a touching film. One buddhish came to my mind: "a split of thoughts determine heaven or hell. " I would give a 8 because the film is solid and touching. However, it certainly is not an entertaining film for X'mas! I also appreciate those Japanese actors in the film. I knew from TV that they returned to the film making without delay after taking care of their families in earthquake!