Empire Of The Sun : The Movie & More (2 Disc Special Edition)  [DVD]
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A British boy living in Shanghai becomes separated from his parents when Japan invades China at the outset of World War II. The film, based on J.G. Ballard's autobiographical novel, traces his progress through prison camp life and his steely determination to survive. The score is by John Williams.
Roundly dismissed as one of Steven Spielberg's least successful efforts, this very underrated film poignantly follows the World War II adventures of young Jim (a brilliant Christian Bale), caught in the throes of the fall of China. What if you once had everything and lost it all in an afternoon? What if you were only 12 years old at the time? Bale's transformation, from pampered British ruling-class child to an imprisoned, desperate, nearly feral boy, is nothing short of stunning. Also stunning are exceptional sets, cinematography and music (the last courtesy of John Williams) that enhance author J.G. Ballard's and screenwriter Tom Stoppard's depiction of another, less familiar casualty of war. In a time when competitors were releasing "comedic", derivative coming-of-age films, Empire of the Sun stands out as an epic in the classic David Lean sense--despite confusion or perceived competition with the equally excellent The Last Emperor (also released in 1987, and also a coming-of-age in a similar setting). It is also a remarkable testament to, yes, the human spirit. And despite its disappointing box-office returns, Empire of the Sun helped to further establish Spielberg as more than a commercial director and set the standard, tone and look for future efforts Schindler's List and Saving Private Ryan. --N.F. Mendoza --This text refers to the Blu-ray edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Blu-ray releases are often a case of hit-and-miss, but I'm glad to say that this blu-ray is excellent. Fans of the film will find that the cinematography is *enormously* enhanced by its being presented in glorious HD - the pin-sharp picture is just a complete joy to watch from beginning to end.
Making-of documentary, 'The China Odyssey'
(Both these were formerly available on DVD. Neither are in HD.)
The film can be listened to in its original (English language) soundtrack, or dubbed into French, German, Italian, Spanish (both Castilian and Latin), and Portuguese.
English, French, German, Italian, Spanish (again, both kinds), Portuguese, Dutch, Finnish, Danish, Norwegian, Swedish and Chinese.Read more ›
This film has one of THE best scenes in cinematic history as far as I'm concerned, involving Jim (Bale) standing atop of a burned out building as a P51 Mustang fighter plane fly's by him so close that you clearly see the pilot smiling and waving at him. It is one of the finest slow motion sequences I have ever seen and I challenge anyone not to be moved by it.
Dont' even think about it - just buy the DVD today, you won't be disapointed.
A heart breaking story with loads of adventures along the way. The boy grows from pampered sheltered middle class "plenty"- to abject suffering and lack.
A happy ending I am pleased to say of a "comming of age" young boy who gets seperated from his mother during the round up for the concentration camps during WWII. I shan't tell you anymore,just to say: "Go AND Buy IT. You wont be disapointed.
A young Christopher bale ('Batman') makes his debut here and impressive it is as he acts his heart out. Sings hauntingly pure, too. Probably one of his finest performnances. Very watchable. Full of haunting brutality. Imaginative honest sensitive scenes and massive direction. At times over the top. At other times very understated...cleverly done.
If you do enjoy this, I would also recommend you watch the Japanes anime "Grave of the Firlies", which is an even more
powerful examination of the impact of war on children.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This movie does not need a long or drawn out review, it is really quite simple. This film is one of the finest movies ever lucky enough to be caught on camera. Read morePublished 1 month ago by A Honest Man
Shame a good film was ruined by subtitles I couldn't get rid of. I've got nothing against the Netherlands, or the Dutch, but it was a bit of a distraction.Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
Absolute classic. Great attention to detail and insight into the dilemma and tragedy of war.Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
Very enjoyable. Saw it years ago and it's as good as I remembered it to be. Sterling performance by Christian Bale at such a young age. Visually good too.Published 2 months ago by Mendel
This is without doubt Steven Spielberg's finest work - and possibly one of the best movies ever.
Based on the semi-autbiographical story of J. G. Read more