Every film that has ever been nominated for an Academy Award in any category. Enjoy!
Empire of the Sun
To survive in a world at war, he must find a strength greater than all the events that surround him.
The story of young English boy who lives with his parents in Shanghai during World War II. After the Pearl Harbor attack, the Japanese occupy the Shanghai International Settlement, and in the following chaos Jim becomes separated from his parents.
Wow, Batman was tiny.
It's freaky just looking at him.
The ending took it up a big notch. Caught me off guard is what happened.
Technically the film is fantastic. Spielberg knows his stuff. The story is a little bit all over the place but Bale really holds it all together. It truly is a great performance. Some other characters do feel underused though. The film tries to rely on Miranda Richardson's character for a couple of emotionally heavy scenes but I felt that she had not been present enough throughout the film to warrant this.
Gotta love the choir singing though.
With Empire of the Sun, Steven Spielberg is simply preparing for Schindler’s List, a film that is a superb period piece with fantastic emotional value. With Empire of the Sun, Spielberg creates one of the most tedious films I’ve ever seen.
Young Christian Bale portrays a spoiled British kid who is separated from his parents and experiences a life outside of his comfort. To put it simply, Bale is terrible in his film debut providing no depth, no charisma nor any versatility whatsoever for his age. There have been far superior performances in Spielberg films from younger actors than Bale: Drew Barrymore as Gertie from E.T and Cary Guffey as Barry in Close Encounters of a Third Kind. Both exceptional…
It seems an odd pairing: Steven Spielberg and his films of emotional warmth and yearning, and JG Ballard, author of detached, forensic examinations of violence. Yet it's easy to see what attracted Spielberg to Ballard's autobiographical novel, as it covers some of the themes he returns to many times over: childhood and family; parental abandonment and a child's adventure; escape and flight as a symbol of transcending ones troubles.
Moreover, Empire of the Sun is about the death of innocence; a boy whose experiences during the Second World War form him into an adult. It's a significant film in Spielberg's body of work as it marks an attempt to shift away from what had been his celebration of the child…
Empire of the Sun is a story about a british boy surviving in a japanese occupied Shangai.
The movie is really beautiful, with really great sceneries and shots. There are some really magical moments, for example when Jim is singing for the three kamikaze.
The acting is really great and what I like about this movie is that infantile feeling as we follow Jim around. Yes, he was a brat and of course those war situations would change him, mature him, but I love how we can watch him still being a kid or befriending a japanese kid, ignoring the hatred of the war. I just didn't like much the way he glamourize the Atom Bomb, but I guess it was his naive way to see it.
This is really a great movie.
Gets pretty Spielberg-y at times—he still hadn't learned to distrust his populist instincts in a purely dramatic context—but the first hour or so, prior to the internment camp, is remarkably strong, not least in its depiction of Jamie as a budding young opportunist who encounters his disreputable future in Basie. (Malkovich gets one of the all-time great entrances here: head down, cap pulled low, just a torrent of wised-up speech; it's ages before we get a good look at his eyes. He'd already won critics' awards a couple years earlier for Killing Fields and Places in the Heart, but this was the role that defined him for me.) Really, you could repair a lot of the damage just by…
I don't know if it's me getting older, but I find myself buying Spielberg's version of sentiment more and more. Empire of the Sun is certainly in the realm of underrated Spielberg, and most definitely in the realm of good Spielberg. His visual style, aping Lean but also giving this movie that very Spielbergian (an adjective that truly exists because of the man) twist, is stunning and gives the film a rewatchability in just the analyzing of his use of motion and framing.
Christian Bale, though, is the MVP of this movie, giving one of the great child performances. He emotes, going through his range, and shows all the potential Bale would live up to later in his wide variety…
This felt like the longest film I have ever seen in my life. I never thought it would end. So boring.
Sure, there is a lot to learn from this, be it from how to stage spectacle to obtaining striking attention to detail, but with no remotely interesting characters to latch onto, there's very little reason to sit through this. Being an aspiring Spielberg completionist (and noticing that it was expiring from OnDemand in a day's time), I took the leap.
The one REALLY interesting thing this movie does: portraying a time in Anglo-Japanese history in which posh, white English folk were detained in containment camps and put under the surveillance of the Japanese army. The white majority was trumped and watch dogged by who they perceived as minorities.
At one point in the film, there is a Caucasian Trail of Tears: imagine that.
Spielberg visits WWII for the second time in this intimate story about a boy separated from his wealthy family and forced to traverse the battlegrounds on his own. At times the film seems unimportant and even slightly boring as we see little action, but it's still a powerful coming-of-age story by the end and shows off young Christian Bale and John Malkovich's acting talent. It's aided by John Williams' music and bleak design, and if you're into WWII, it's a good watch.
Underrated, and at times misunderstood. You have to take into account that you're seeing the world through a child's eyes, and that the child is at times delusional. For example, consider the image of the pilot from the comic book he reads at the beginning of the film, contrasted with how John Malkovich looks.
Cinematography is excellent too, particularly during the attack at the prison camp about 3/4 of the way through the movie.
It's tough to decide if this is a perfect movie or not. There tends to be elements in it that viewers don't catch on to with initial, and even second, viewings. Even so, with the initial viewing, it's a damn good entertaining movie. I'd say it's…
Thanks to Bale's Oscar-nomination worthy performance, incredible cinematography, John Williams' score, and some very powerful scenes, Empire of the Sun largely succeeds. But it has an inherent sentimentality to it that Spielberg could have left out - with the character and story arcs still working.
Alas, it's a very good film, just one that would have benefited by knowing what brevity is.
Christian Bale's been so talented since he was a kid, that is impressive.
By far the weakest
of the Batman film saga,
but really cool planes
Plane Movie #1 watched. Empire of the Sun.
Ya happy now, Scott?
It's..... alright. As far as Spielberg and WW2 goes, it's not his best.
I think the movie was too long, took too long to get moving. Kinda boring in parts.
But the 2nd half of the movie I really liked. Once John Malkovich and Joe Pantoliano show up. And when we're in the prison camp, then it got really good.
Ends well, too.
Christian Bale is of course excellent, he really looks pretty much the same more or less.
It's not bad. I'd put it in the bottom half of Spielberg films. The moments when it FELT like a Spielberg film, not so hot.
But when it got a little darker, it was very good.
It's worth at least one watch.
- The Racket
- 7th Heaven
- Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans
- Chang: A Drama of the Wilderness
- À nous la liberté
- About Schmidt
- Absence of Malice
- Adam's Rib
From the NYT website:
This list is drawn from the second edition of The New York Times Guide to the…
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