entertainment

Angelina Jolie's film 'Unbroken' finally opens in Japan

104 Comments
By YURI KAGEYAMA

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

104 Comments
Login to comment

Not a bad historical movie.

What exactly is 'anti-Japan' anyway - sounds like paranoia or an overt inferiority complex to me.

28 ( +33 / -5 )

I am not surprised that there are groups which try to boycot the movie in Japan. When Japan wanted to have exhibitions of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, there were boycotting moves in America for reasons of cruelties of the bombs and many attempts were cancelled in the past.

-19 ( +2 / -21 )

But some in Japan have also had a hard time coming to terms with the country’s brutal past of colonizing Asian neighbors and the barbaric acts carried out by the Imperial Army, such as the Rape of Nanjing, which began in 1937 and left 300,000 Chinese dead.

Sounds about right, yep. Lot's of them here JT it seems.

21 ( +25 / -4 )

This article seems biased as usual. Why "300,000 Chinese dead", like China says, even though also the Western historians agree about the fact there are no official numbers? Plus, give Japan a break. WWII is over 70 years ago. It's absurd to have daily news about it like if we were still fighting that war. It's becoming an obsession just to revamp nationalism in East Asia.

-29 ( +12 / -41 )

Plus, give Japan a break. WWII is over 70 years ago. It's absurd to have daily news about it like if we were still fighting that war.

You might want to tell that to the people who bothered to call and complain to the distribution.

This is article is about a film that was released in Japan just recently, so it is very much news.

34 ( +38 / -4 )

Plus, give Japan a break. WWII is over 70 years ago. It's absurd to have daily news about it like if we were still fighting that war.

..that's usually a type of comment made right after someone confirms the hundreds of thousands, if not, millions of civilians that died under Imperial Japan.

21 ( +24 / -3 )

I saw this movie and can honestly say that if anyone is calling the movie anti-Japanese, they have not seen it. Seemed to me just the one guy "The Bird" who was vicious.

Can't there be any movies that show Japanese people as criminal during war time?

Do Japanese always have to be shown as brave, dedicated, honorable and or the victims as most movies from Japan about the war show Japanese to be?

Why is a movie about one man's experiences while imprisoned in Japan anti-Japan or lies?

In fact why is every negative thing that foreign people wrote or spoke about under Japanese forces lies and or Japan bashing?
36 ( +38 / -2 )

Good Movie, No different to the railway man (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_RailwayMan(film) both have good ending . Truth and history cant be changed.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

I think it's not normal at all to have tons of discussions on a daily basis over stuff that was already settled after the war by the Allies.To me it seems a convenient move to divert people attention from the current problems in all the countries involved. But it's not like my point can be understood properly here. Too many nationalists who apparently like playing the same game of some governments. Bye.

-23 ( +5 / -28 )

The theme tune “Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence,” is played everywhere in Japan on the run up to Christmas, along side all the other favourites. Most Japanese are oblivious to the connection to a POW film depicting Japanese atrocities in WWII.

9 ( +12 / -3 )

I saw the movie and felt that it was more about Ms Jolie’s fascination with SandM than telling the story of a man who went from Olympic athlete through to POW and ultimate redemption after suffering his imprisonment by the Japanese. The movie ignored the story of Zamperini’s life AFTER he was released from the Japanese Prison. It was all about torture and pain, as a POW, with nothing about the role of religion which ultimately proved to be his salvation. Jolie needs to be stopped from directing movies because she is completely inept at it and has no idea about editing and continuity of story/dialogue.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

@Alex80. It is a movie about ONE man's experiences.

I think it's not normal at all to have tons of discussions on a daily basis over stuff that was already settled after the war by the Allies.

So, by that logic we can not have any movie about anything ever in history!! All movies about what happened to anyone at all is something does not belong in movies?

To me it seems a convenient move to divert people attention from the current problems in all the countries involved.

Are you saying that the writer, director and all who were involved in the movie were part of a secret plan to get us to look at something else as opposed to what is happening today's world. Like some sort of conspiracy? I hardly think that is the case.

But it's not like my point can be understood properly here.

Well, not with the logic that you have put out there, no. Sorry.

Too many nationalists who apparently like playing the same game of some governments.

Yes, very true. Nationalist in Japan stopped the movie from being played in Japan because they figured that anything that shows a Japanese in a negative light was something that needed to be suppressed and the right wing agree whole-heartedly. That was a very true statement indeed.

12 ( +14 / -2 )

@sandiegoluv...I was speaking in general, sorry if it wasn't clear. It's normal to have like 4 or 5 or also more news every day related to WWII. This movie isn't a problem at all per se.

-5 ( +5 / -10 )

Seemed to me just the one guy "The Bird" who was vicious.

@Sandiegolov

CBS Sports put together an outstanding documentary on Zamperini during the 1998 Nagano Olympics. They even managed to track down "the Bird," Mutsuhiro Watanaba (渡辺むつひろ), who everyone thought had died in the closing days of the war. He managed to escaped trial as a class B war criminal by hiding out for several years after the war, and at the time of the interview was working in the insurance industry in central Tokyo. Here is the video (about 35 minutes, interview with the Bird starts at around the 31-minute mark): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aEGL-wyz1yk

If you live in or visit Japan, the Yokohama and Tokyo sites of the POW camps he was placed in were the Omori POW Camp nearby present-day Omori Station one stop from Shinagawa Station, and Ofuna POW Camp in Kanagawa Prefecture nearby Ofuna Staion on the Negishi Line, not far from Kamakura.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

@Alex80 - My apologies for misunderstanding your post.

@Sensato - I have seen that video. Good video. Although Mr. Watanabe surely did not fair well at all in it. I do live in Japan quite near one of those sites, but I have not visited them. Thank you for the information though.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Angelina Jolie's film 'Unbroken' finally opens in Japan

Good. I hope many japanese will go to see it with an open mind. Especially the Japanese authorities who might "detain" and or "deport" A. Jolie if she ever flies into Narita or Haneda.

In fact why is every negative thing that foreign people wrote or spoke about under Japanese forces lies and or Japan bashing?

. . . I often ponder this too. The only thing I can come up with is that the japanese are sore losers. This is why the gov won't even admit to wartime past- especially the comfort women issue.

8 ( +12 / -4 )

In my latest post I meant to say it's NOT normal. Sorry but it's not really normal to have tons of "news" about WWll every single day and they are always about the same topics.

-7 ( +5 / -12 )

"Do Japanese always have to be shown as brave, dedicated, honorable and or the victims. "

Yes. They do.

13 ( +15 / -2 )

Implying Hollywood always showed Japanese people in a good way. Lol. The rest of the world should make tons of movies that show the real face of the supposed American heroes who are all saints, sacrificing their life in every angle of the planet.

-10 ( +7 / -17 )

Zampernini tried to meet his torturer but the arogant coward refused to meet him. He said white peoples society is different than japanese, and beating was ok. If the IJA would of been the victors, this is what you could of expected, total submission to the victor, if not, a barbaric beating.. Im sure there will be all kinds of whinning and buses with speakers, but its good they allow it to be shown. Im sick of hearing the whinners excuses like everything is anti japanese. What Id like to hear is what would of been the outcome if they would of won, you never see anything about that.

16 ( +19 / -3 )

There were concerns that right-wing extremists may try to disrupt the opening.

Plus, give Japan a break. WWII is over 70 years ago. It's absurd to have daily news about it like if we were still fighting that war. (@Alex80)

The international media and worldwide media consumers do not seem to be all that interested in WWII overall, but what does pique their interested is the high-profile and vocal revisionism/denial that Japan's right-wing extremists and Abe/the LDP bring to these issues. Otherwise, these stories would hardly be covered at all.

The Japanese extremists and LDP politicians continually and consistently shoot themselves in the foot — its almost masochistic to the extent that they seem to be gluttons for punishment.

Also, 70 years ago is relatively recent history, and WWII films will be with us for many centuries to come. Think about it. African American slavery which ended in 1865 can still make headlines. Japanese movie makers are still putting out films about the nation's Sengoku Jidai wars of the 1500s. Films are still made about the Romans.

By the way, I made a mistake with "the Bird's" name above, it should be Mutsuhiro Watanabe (渡邊睦裕).

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Especially the Japanese authorities who might "detain" and or "deport" A. Jolie if she ever flies into Narita or Haneda.

Hyperbole much?

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Unbroken is a work of creepy, half-hilarious master-race propaganda almost worthy of Leni Riefenstahl. Love how the Japanese characters do little but grunt, scream, punch and kick while the U.S. bombing crews who mass murdered women, children and babies are depicted as the second coming of Jesus.

Entertainment for ignorant Americans with no knowledge of WWII.

-14 ( +2 / -16 )

@5petals. Good post. Zampernini found the forgiveness in his own heart befriend his former torturer. The fact that "coward" refused only illustrates Japan's post WW2 denial, guilt and incriminating attitudes there after.

At the end of the movie, I was shocked to learn that the torturer refused to meet Zampernini. I'm glad A. Jolie made it a point to include this at the end of the film. But it must be bitter to japanese viewers.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

Anyway people like wc626 sound like they are still fighting against Japan. Sorry man, but your average Japanese people aren't losers, they are only normal human beings who care about their own family, job, friends.

-14 ( +2 / -16 )

Many taking offense at the film are outraged that the book on which the movie is based mentions that Japanese soldiers engaged in cannibalism, although the film does not touch on the subject at all. Some historians say some Japanese soldiers did engage in cannibalism.

An irrefutable fact. My Grandfather's war diary, of which I have a copy, describes the Japanese soldiers starving in and around the islands of New Guinea as the Australian and US troops began their push through islands like Bougainville, Rabaul, Numfoor and Wewak. He talks quite candidly about how the Japanese would try to get into mess tents to steal food and end up shot most of the time, though occasionally captured. He also notes quite grimly several times that US and Australian soldiers killed in firefights often ended up being eaten by the Japanese due to them starving.

Nishimura describes it quite candidly in his book 'Boneman of Kakoda'.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kokichi_Nishimura

These 'historians' sound very, very selective in their research to me.

15 ( +16 / -1 )

See the movie for goodness sakes and then comment (some have but many have not) !

3 ( +5 / -2 )

@Alex80

Anyway people like wc626 sound like they are still fighting against Japan.

He seems more concerned with Japan's attitude towards their wartime behavior I think - this is a pretty universal feeling around the world.

Sorry man, but your average Japanese people aren't losers, they are only normal human beings who care about their own family, job, friends.

I don't think ANYONE on this comments board would disagree with that sentiment - you seem to be confusing criticism of Japan's wartime behavior and their current attitude towards those behaviors with racism.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

igloo buyer: "What exactly is 'anti-Japan' anyway - sounds like paranoia or an overt inferiority complex to me."

"Anti-Japan" is defined as: (v.t.) "the act of engaging in dialogue on a subject that right-wing leaning Japanese disagree with, but is based on historical truths they cannot refute or argue against." But yes, inferiority complex is definitely in there.

Alex80: "Plus, give Japan a break. WWII is over 70 years ago. It's absurd to have daily news about it like if we were still fighting that war."

And how many posts have you made on this thread alone so far, of your own free will? Should history, including the atomic bombings and your own nation's role in WWII, be forgotten and never talked about because it was 70 years ago? What about Ancient Rome and Greece, the Middle Ages, Columbus, the Church, WWI... should we not talk about history, ever, Alex, because it was in the past so long ago, or is it just that you don't like it when Japan's skeletons are brought out to air, and the chickens come home to roost?

And keep in mind, Alex -- none of this would even be an issue if the right hadn't put up such a stink about keeping this movie out, threatening the life of the director, and people whining about how "anti-Japanese" the movie is; you should be directing your "forget about it" comments to them, not the people who made or want to see the film.

17 ( +18 / -1 )

it is indeed a good movie! It's a movie about a man who lived during the World War 2 not an Anti Japan movie. The problem is many Japanese need to accept the truth that what was done by their soldiers during WW2 was terrible, if they do that then there will be no problem showing this, the truth will set you free. The reason why it is a big deal until now is because many cannot admit that what Japan did was wrong, they always think that they were the victims! lot's of movie were produced about the NAZIs, but did Germany complain like Japan? these movies were even distributed in Germany, I even have German friends who told me that Saving Private Ryan is their favorite movie!

12 ( +12 / -0 )

“Unbroken” is based on the true story of Zamperini, an Olympic athlete who gets shot down in a U.S. bomber and survives by floating in the ocean on an inflatable boat, but gets captured by the Japanese. He survives horrible torture in World War II camps until Japan’s defeat in 1945."

Interesting how films become more than reality. Aren't Japanese audiences ok with a film that tells a reality that paints a not too nice picture? (All grown-up now, right?) Actually seems a bit condescending.

Is Jolie's artful manipulation too artful or too manipulative? Pick a side!!

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

"but what does pique their interested is the high-profile and vocal revisionism/denial that Japan's right-wing extremists and Abe/the LDP bring to these issues. Otherwise, these stories would hardly be covered at all.

The Japanese extremists and LDP politicians continually and consistently shoot themselves in the foot — its almost masochistic to the extent that they seem to be gluttons for punishment."

This is an interesting phenomenon I have also observed, and have trouble processing it. I think it might be due so some self imposed isolation, residual mindset, thats still unable to connect to the outside world. Or could it be a desire for supremacy? could it be due to the reverse course and somebody else is to blame? It doesnt follow their own recited version of how things should of been, so when theres a window of opportunity, they try and hijack the narrative and take it to where they want, not realizing its too late. This characteristic is a bit scary to me, because I wonder what they really think of the rest of us sometimes. This type of movie must really disturb them, Im sure. But then again, it might just be my Western logic trying to process it, but I really cant understand why, as you put it, somebody would continuously shoot themselves in the foot.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

@Alex 80 - Seems like I did not misunderstand you at all in the first place. You have to be kidding me? How many jidai films do we have going on in Japan all the time? How about the dramas that show poor Japanese people living their lives in war conditions? You have never seen them or a movie about historical events in your life that had to do with war and how someone was treated? Of course you have.

As for, "Give Japan A Break", seriously? Why? I am a white American male and I don't get a break for what my ancestors did. We don't give white Americans a break and slavery has been over for more than 150 years. There are so many movies about how the Germans behaved? Never seen one of them? Maybe one called "Schindler's List"? I am sure you must have seen it. The movies theaters in Japan were swamped with movie goers when it came out. Do you know how many Japanese internment movies have been made by Hollywood? There are quite a few and I don't really remember anyone complaining about them.

American Pastime (2007) Bad Day at Black Rock (1955) Come See the Paradise (1990) Day of Independence (2003) Farewell to Manzanar (1976) Forgotten Valor (2001) Go for Broke! (1951) Hell to Eternity (1960) If Tomorrow Comes (1971) Snow Falling on Cedars (1999) Strawberry Fields (1997)

And I am sure that many more will come as well. Now, you can get irritated because the movie is about ONE bad guy who HAPPENED to be Japanese and take it as a Japan bashing movie, or you can go see it and then say what most of us who have seen the movie are saying. Also, is it your impression that someone who suffered in a POW camp has no to right to have his book published and made into a movie, just because it is uncomfortable for some to hear the truth about ONE person's actions come out? The Bird is not you and does not represent you. Why? Because HE is not YOU.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

The IJA etc was a well disicplined army and if you were part of it, of course you would be nostalgic of its memories and proud of being an officer or NCO, so I am not one to take that away, those of us who were military types know this. But due to the brutality of what happened, its a difficult subject to promote outside of Japan, I guess thats why Germany stays clear of their past, perhaps acknowledging the nazi technical accomplishments but at the same time moving on. Japan seems to be in a different rut, however, unwilling to move past it. Perhaps once they become a normal nation it will help with the transition.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Plus, give Japan a break. WWII is over 70 years ago. It's absurd to have daily news about it like if we were still fighting that war.

Great so you agree that Abe and the like can stop visiting Yasukuni, the memorials at Hiroshima and Nagasaki should stop and textbooks can stop talking about the bombing of Hiroshima in their English books, right?

13 ( +15 / -2 )

it might just be my Western logic trying to process it, but I >really cant understand why

As a non-Japanese Asian, I can assure you, non-Western minds are befuddled too.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

The Japanese, for the most part, seem to prefer movies which depict them as victims of WWII, rather than as invaders, wrong-doers and the bringers of misery to so many. This movie (Unbroken) is quite good and I thought it was probably pretty accurate based on WWII POW accounts I've read. No it doesn't paint a pretty picture of the Japanese during WWII, but the same can be said to some extent about many if not most other countries during times of war. What sets the Japanese apart from the rest of us is their resistance to accepting responsibility for their actions and to avoid confronting particular historical facts.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

Plus, give Japan a break. WWII is over 70 years ago. It's absurd to have daily news about it like if we were still fighting that >>war.

We must "forgive" but also "not forget". This is our duty for the next generation.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Anti Japanese = Anything that shows us in a less than perfect light.

10 ( +13 / -3 )

Alex80: Why "300,000 Chinese dead", like China says, even though also the Western historians agree about the fact there are no official numbers?

Why trust Western historians to characterize an event that happened 70 years ago in China?

-15 ( +0 / -15 )

A good book, and not a particularly bad movie - it did hew fairly close to the original. A much better book is the fictionalised autobiography "The Narrow Road to the Deep North". The scene in the leaking tent in which the major responsible for construction of the death railway through Burma meets with the captain in charge of the author's crew is the best rendering of the self-referential absurdity of Japanese revisionist thinking I've ever encountered.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

A pity that "The Bird" isn't alive to see this day. I wonder if Mr Abe plans to watch the film

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Funny, where was LDP and its calls for balanced and free broadcasting when the debate about Unbroken being shown in Japan was going on a year ago? Guess showing of balanced and unbiased programs / movies only become important to Jiminto when they are trying to silence programs/ movies critical or contrary to their "official views". Brownie points to the distributors for finally going ahead with it.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

So will Agela Jollie be put in detention, tortured and then deported if she comes to Japan?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Sunday afternoon, same bunch wasting their time in the comments section....

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Strangerland, Hope I did not hurt your feeling sweetie....

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Unbroken is a work of creepy, half-hilarious master-race propaganda almost worthy of Leni Riefenstahl.

What makes you think it's propaganda? The story was told by a POW of what Louis Zamperini went through. Why would anyone want to make up something so horrific and traumatizing? It just doesn't make sense. None of us were there on walking in his shoes. You just don't make this kind of stuff up.

Love how the Japanese characters do little but grunt, scream, punch and kick while the U.S. bombing crews who mass murdered women, children and babies are depicted as the second coming of Jesus.

So if it's an anti-Japanese movie, then maybe you didn't pay close enough attention, even after all that Zamperini endured, he still forgave his captors and had no hate in his heart for Japan or the people for that matter.

Entertainment for ignorant Americans with no knowledge of WWII.

So what you are trying to say, the Japanese weren't responsible for ANY atrocities during the war and the Americans that fought and died in that war are ignorant??

I always love people that try to deny history in order to make themselves feel warm, confident and content.

11 ( +13 / -2 )

I didn't read all the replies to me. I see press propaganda is working well. I have not any problem about the fact the world knows Japanese war crimes. They are known facts that everyone study in Italian schools, for example. I have a problem when these facts are used 70 years later to find an excuse to push nationalism in East Asia. Shame on who is creating this mess. And it's not only Japan. But it's convenient for some people here to ignore the real point of mine.

-12 ( +2 / -14 )

@Alex:

No, Alex, you don't really seem to have a point other than, "just get over it all ready," completely ignroing the fact that plenty of WWII documentaries have been made about Germany etc.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

war crimes

" war crimes" was coined by US after the war. They said "crimes against peace" It is a new law created after the war, which is illegal. Japan lost the war so they said "war crimes" but what Japan did was what other countres were doing.

-23 ( +0 / -23 )

@takeda: I have not any problem with this movie or other documentaries. For example I have some "problems" when Greece tries to re-open WWII disputes with Germany, because while I believe the Greeks can be right, and they were never properly compensated, what was already settled years ago must be accepted or it is a never ending game that hurt current diplomacy. History must be remembered but not used for some political agenda in the present.What is happening in East Asia.But I am tiref now. My point is never seen and I get replies that have NOTHING to do with my opinion.

-13 ( +0 / -13 )

@utorsa

Unbroken is a work of creepy, half-hilarious master-race propaganda almost worthy of Leni Riefenstahl.

So, sneers you.

But what it is creepy about it? If you are talking about “The Bird’s” actions, you are right. One would also called them cruel and heinous. How can anyone find it half-hilarious? Why are you labeling this man’s story as “master race propaganda”? This was his story. Are you calling him a liar? How do you know? Were you there? How obnoxious and unfair for you to compare this man to Leni Riefenstahl!

I love how the Japanese characters do little but grunt, scream, punch and kick

I did not know that prison guards way back then did very much more that. They are not generally known for being chatterboxes and gentle people. But to be honest, I doubt that the prisoners understood very much about what the guards were saying during that time since Japanese was not their first language to begin with.

while the U.S. bombing crews who mass murdered women, children and babies are depicted as the second coming of Jesus.

What movie were you watching? I never saw them as being depicted as the second coming of Jesus and what US military people did during the war has NOTHING to do with the movie at all. Since that is your take of it, one must ask, did you REALLY watch the movie at all? You are just throwing dirt. You have brought nothing to this conversation whatsoever except mudslinging.

Entertainment for ignorant Americans with no knowledge of WWII.

WOW. That is really sad to read. It was not entertainment only. It was someone’ story about what happened to them. Why is it that WE have to be ignorant? And what makes you think it is only WE Americans. Why is it that everyone else who is a foreigner who talks about their experience in WWII is either lying or ignorant. Is it ONLY the Japanese that can be trusted?

British. Americans Canadians Australians New Zealanders MOST OF ASIA as well

All of those people are liars. And the one honest group of people are the Japanese? That’s all. Why should we trust that? Because the Japanese said so? Is that all that is needed? Frankly you have brought no intellectual value to the conversation at all. With thoughts like yours, no wonder people can not let go of Japan’s past actions.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

@tinawatanabe "...what Japan did was what other countres were doing."

You mean Japanese soldiers like "the bird" acted like monsters? I agree. Watanabe was a coward and a sadist like some people from other countries too. We should take into consideration the-bird-Watanabe's own admission of his own barbarism. Then you can stop saying there is a misrepresentation generally.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Japan lost the war so they said "war crimes" but what Japan did was what other countres were doing.

tinawatanabe -Not by a long shot. The Japanese treatment of POWs was the most sadistic, brutal, and shocking of any nation in WW2. But then, you would have to read an actual history textbook to know this.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

My point is never seen and I get replies that have NOTHING to do with my opinion.

No one is entitled to getting replies, and maybe you should rethink your opinions if the replies are don't make sense. So let's have a look:

I have not any problem with this movie or other documentaries.

Well apparently you do when you consider it to this:

History must be remembered but not used for some political agenda in the present.What is happening in East Asia.

This,here. Is it just harmless entertainment or propaganda to you? I think this is why you get the responses you do. If you have no problem with the video, it seems inappropriate to then bring the topic of propaganda into the conversation.

Additionally, bringing Greco-German relations up here is doesn't really do much. Its got nothing to do with Japan or Unbroken.

what was already settled years ago must be accepted or it is a never ending game that hurt current diplomacy. History must be remembered but not used for some political agenda in the present.

Hurt diplomacy? This film has nothing to do with diplomacy. If you want to know hurts diplomacy, have a look at Ms. Watanabe's post above. Rightwingers like her hurt diplomacy. People who are so willingly to see the flaws in other people and other countries, while ignoring their own problems are what hurt diplomacy, not some Hollywood movie.

And lastly, I cannot think of any reason why sharing Mr. Zamperini's story would be offensive- unless telling the truth is now offensive.

Japan lost the war so they said "war crimes" but what Japan did was what other countres were doing.

Really? Got any links??

4 ( +7 / -3 )

@tinawatanabe "

...what Japan did was what other countres were doing."

It has absolutely nothing at all to do with this movie or anything at all. Make a movie talking about American War Crimes, and then we can talk about it.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Make a movie talking about American War Crimes, and then we can talk about it.

but Americans "didn't do any War Crimes" as the winner.

The Japanese treatment of POWs was the most sadistic, brutal, and shocking of any nation in WW2.

Koreans were many of them and hunged. Some Japanese were hunged simply because of serving "Gobo", a Japanese food but accused of "serving woods."

you would have to read an actual history textbook to know this

Isoroku Yamamoto, who attached Pearl Harbor, was very educated with Hervard education and had many American friends. It was possible that he was deceived to attacked Pearl Harbor by US. HIstory is not that black and white.

-18 ( +1 / -19 )

Koreans were many of them and hunged.

Thank you for again pointing how terrible the people of Korea, which was colonized by Japan, were.

It was possible that he was deceived to attacked Pearl Harbor by US. HIstory is not that black and white.

And its equally possible that the Martians bombed Hiroshima and Nagasaki after a fallingout with Emperor Hirohito. In other words, not terribly likely.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

@tinawatanabe - Both of these statements have absolutely NOTHING to do with the movie. Nothing at all.

...but Americans "didn't do any War Crimes" as the winner. ...Koreans were many of them and hunged. Some Japanese were hunged simply because of serving "Gobo", a Japanese food but accused of "serving woods. ...Isoroku Yamamoto, who attached Pearl Harbor, was very educated with Hervard education and had many American friends. It was possible that he was deceived to attacked Pearl Harbor by US. HIstory is not that black and white.

My apologies but what we are talking about is the movie and why it could not be shown in Japan, which seems to be because of people like yourself. Have you seen the movie yourself? I seriously doubt it. Once again, there is nothing wrong with this man telling his story and it being made into a movie. It is not a propaganda ploy. It is not Japan bashing. It is just a movie about one man's life under a sadistic guard. It is amazing that this movie could be labeled Japan bashing. I would hate to see how you would react over a movie that showed what many countries's people say the Japanese of the past did to them. Notice how I said, "Japanese of the past" and not YOU?

And there are movies that show the Americans as the bad guys. Do a little research. How many Japanese movies can you name that do the same thing? Show the Japanese as the bad guy? Seriously......

6 ( +8 / -2 )

tinawatanabeFEB. 07, 2016 - 06:22PM JST

Make a movie talking about American War Crimes, and then we can talk about it. but Americans "didn't do any War Crimes" as the winner.

Who says they didn't? They did, but no where near the same level of cruelty and large scale that Japan did. (note: Tina this is not 'anti-Japan', this is just criticism, not the same thing)

Koreans were many of them and hunged. Some Japanese were hunged simply because of serving "Gobo", a Japanese food but accused of "serving woods."

Possibly, what's the point? No one ever said Japan was the only committer of atrocities, only that they committed atrocities on a scale close to that of the Nazis which is nothing compared to that of any other country, including Korea.

Again, not 'anti-Japan', just fact. We can love Japan and still criticize it; that's how change happens.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

" war crimes" was coined by US after the war. They said "crimes against peace" It is a new law created after the war, which is illegal. Japan lost the war so they said "war crimes" but what Japan did was what other countres were doing.

Japan was not a signatory to the Geneva convention, and like we often see today, decided to do their own thing, resulting in quite the disaster, so no, your reference to the post war war crimes made up by convenience by the U.S. is not entirely true.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Let me get this straight tinawatanabe;

Japan is the innocent victim in all of this and it did not victimize anyone else at all.

We can not talk about any kind of harsh treatment committed by the Japanese because it was done by everyone else anyway. Although you sure do not mind going to see a movie like "Schindler's list".

3.If anyone wants to talk about how they were treated by their Japanese captors, it is automatically Japan-bashing.

Everyone else is lying about Japan's actions in WWII.

Japan should always send its children and encourage foreign dignitaries to visit Hiroshima and Nagasaki so that they learn about the atrocities that were committed on them by the US forces, all the while ignoring all other past actions that Japan may or may not have done.

Is this your honest view of things? It seems to me that you can not even stand a movie like "Unbroken" which does not show Japan in a negative light at all. Just one man. But I bet you sure would not stop at the chance to see a movie depicting heinous crimes committed by foreigners on your people.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Everyone thinking this movie completely ignores American war crimes seems to completely miss the scene featuring the fire bombing raids of Tokyo, with mutilated Japanese bodies and crying family members. That was the scene where I personlly knew this was a very good WWII movie. But the people crying about Japan-bashing seems to be of the opinion that every WWII movie must be like Grave of the Fireflies (which is great and thoughtful, nothing against it at all), that only shows Japanese suffering, with people of other nationalities absent.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

@takeda I loved this:

And its equally possible that the Martians bombed Hiroshima and Nagasaki after a fallingout with Emperor Hirohito. In other words, not terribly likely.

@igloobuyer -Right on the money with this one.

Again, not 'anti-Japan', just fact. We can love Japan and still criticize it; that's how change happens.

Why cant people get that? It is not a hate filled thing at all for most of us. We are just talking about the wrongs committed. Give me a post attacking my own country and I will spend a lot of time on it if I see it. What is it with this patriotism to the point of ignoring the nose on your face? I would think it better to just admit things so that everyone can move on. It is not what YOU did YOURSELF, but what someone else did. It is absolutely nothing to do with you at all.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I really wanna attend her funeral

And as I say, that shows she did something right.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Why cant people get that?

@sandiegoluv I think one of the pitfalls of the internet is getting caught up with anonymous people. We don't know who they, their mental state, their age...there are some nationalists here and nationalism is a kind of faith like a cult religion. Some nationalists grow out of it and become more sophisticated and nuanced. Some of them may have psychological problems or may be very immature. Maybe some are just consumed with anger. Once you pull of brick out of the nationalist mind, the wall crumbles. But the thing about the nationalist posters here is that they are the same as nationalists all over the world. They are not any different in their world view. I do think it's possible to criticize various narratives about Japan without being a nationalist - of course. But the nationalist mind is a special case as their identity is totally wrapped up in the imaginary concept of nation and I think any criticism is felt like a sharp emotional sting.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

@shallots - Very, very true. Good points. It is quite common around the world with right wingers.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Alex80: "I didn't read all the replies to me."

You fit right in here, then. Like people who are against this movie, you included, you don't like to see the facts.

"I see press propaganda is working well."

First, Alex -- how did you see that if you admit you ignored the replies to your comment? Second, since you admit you ignored the replies, and insist your message is correct including the "let's leave Japan alone already!" and "it was 70 years ago!", it's YOU pressing the propaganda, not the people who say the story should be told.

"I have a problem when these facts are used 70 years later to find an excuse to push nationalism in East Asia."

And yet you insist they be forgotten in order to push nationalism in East Asia. Again, you fit right in, Alex.

"History must be remembered but not used for some political agenda in the present."

Excuse me? You JUST said we should forget about it because it was 70 years ago!

tinawatanabe: "Koreans were many of them and hunged. Some Japanese were hunged simply because of serving "Gobo", a Japanese food but accused of "serving woods."

Ah, it didn't take you long to lapse into the "it was South Korea's fault" state of mind.

"Isoroku Yamamoto, who attached Pearl Harbor, was very educated with Hervard education and had many American friends. It was possible that he was deceived to attacked Pearl Harbor by US. HIstory is not that black and white."

Ah, and of course, Japan had no individuality or strength, honour, or ability to act even back then but was a puppet of the US.

We're still waiting for you to reply on the thread you ran away from the other day about sex-slaves, tina, so you can answer us on this one: what wrong-doings do you believe Japan did in the past (not South Korean controlled Japan, not US controlled Japan, things that JAPAN did and was not a victim of)? Others went ahead and said what their nations did when you deflected and demanded it, so, go ahead.

AstoBoy: "I heard that the woman is now 38kg. So when will this Angelina die? I'm planning to attend her funeral."

Not surprised some Japanese respond this way when faced with history (and then call you a Japan basher for pointing it out!). She really made guys like you scared and afraid; just one, small (you claim) woman did all that to you. Poor guy.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

@shallots,

I think you have made some good points, but the nationalist phenomenon in Japan seems to be unique, at least to me. I think some it comes from past isolation, thus its evolved into what you see today (as the poster metioned about continuously shooting oneself in the foot). Also, what I have found with many Japanese nationalist, is their very strange preoccupation with all things foreign, some are even married to foreigners, or work for them. Its if they want to be somewhat distant from other Japanese, and be in a position of authority etc to control foreigners, or examine them, scold, lecture etc, thereby feeding their ego. Other Japanese would likely shun them and view their rhetoric as wack, but a naive foriegner is easy an easy victim for their attack. Ive witnessed this time after time, and am wary of any Japanese who is fluent in English.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

atrocities on a scale close to that of the Nazis

What is evidence? All you have is hearsay. Japan lost the war and the winners grossly exggerated it.

-15 ( +1 / -16 )

Not seen the movie, but will if it comes to Ibaraki.

Some of the comments here are downright despicable. I hate fascism and fascists in whatever guise they come in. Think it's typical of this place though; so many comments about a movie, or a "4.6 magnitude earthquake rattles...." but none about the hundred or more buried beneath a building in Taiwan?

As Gabriel Byrne says in The Usual Suspects, "I want nothing to do with any of you - I beg your pardon - but you can all go to hell."

0 ( +4 / -4 )

@5petals Broadly speaking, I don't see any aspect of nationalism in Japan that is different. But, I keep an open mind. Nationalism is a ideology that has some common features wherever you go. I think it's probably traceable back to 19th century romantic ideas, although the formation of the nation goes back another couple of hundred years depending on where you are and how you look at it. Nationalists see nationality as the core of their identity, they imagine that the nation represents a pure and unified ethnic group that is, somewhat paradoxically, both a victim and superior. They cannot brook any criticism of the nation. They see the world in black and white terms. This is true of how some people represent themselves here. I should say, you don't have to be a nationalist to criticize this movie or to criticize narratives created about Japan. However, there are a few posters around these parts who fit the nationalist bill. Nationalism is a kind of imagined world. It is not reality in terms of its usefulness in describing what happens in the world. Another point to make is that nations, historically and relatively speaking, are quite new and of all the nations, Japan is probably one of the newest. But I'm not an expert on Japan and others can maybe provide an alternative point of view.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

What is evidence? All you have is hearsay. Japan lost the war and the winners grossly exggerated it.

Whatever you say, Tina Tojo.

Still waiting for you to reply to choiwaruijin, who brilliantly laid out (at your request) the war crimes his country commited. Somehow you cannot do the same. What a liar you are. Its a pitiful you have done nothing better with your life thsn simply being born Japanese. What a miserable life you must live.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

@tinawatanabe "Japan lost the war..." Well, there is something we can agree on. I don't know if this forum will allow it but, aisde from answering some of the interesting questions already posed to you on several occasions, I'm curious what your opinion is of Japan's allies. I guess you would prefer if if Japan had won. Are you glad Germany lost? What's your view of the holocaust? Was it necessary for Japan to have allied itself with Hitler? It may seem off topic but it would be interesting and maybe helpful to get some context from you. You have strong opinions about Japan. Is this connected to a broader opinion of how the world works?

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Fun fact: smith is actually a right winger, supporting American plan to revamp nationalism in Japan against China. To revamp nationalism, the US use also their movies. I am a left winger person, supporting China and I hope the US leave Asia, because they are the real reason for Japanese revisionism and nationalism. Sorry smith, these are the facts, no matter how you try to manipulate my posts content. I have not any problem with admitting Japanese war crimes. I have problems with the American political agenda in East Asia, that uses puppet states like Japan and S.Korea for their interests. :)

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

@Alex80 Interesting post. Supporting China? Why? So how do you feel about the umbrella movement in HK? Or democracy in general? Or freedom? Japanese nationalists are one cause of Japanese nationalism. Though, you may be right that the U.S. is another factor. Japan seems to be a creation of the U.S. in a lot of ways. I guess that's obvious: the modern Japanese economy and even the success of the LDP is partly and American creation. But, it's not exactly an easy or simple situation for Japan. That is, if you view China and NK as another kind of danger. What you say are not facts Alex. These are assertions. Some of what you say I think can be supported academically. Some of what you say is very general and vague. I think it's a rhetorical move to say "these are the facts" but not a straightforward way to argue - if you'll allow some gentle criticism. :)

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Alex80 Honestly, don't think hollywood types care much about Japan. Your post sounds like a kind of conspiracy theory. Japan is not so important, relatively, in the large scheme of things (and the time when anyone in Washington could organize hollywood to directly do their bidding has past as has the time when Japan was on their "to-do list) - and getting less important as time marches on. I don't think it's entirely unfair to call Japan as U.S. puppet. But this is a complicated question and it doesn't mean Japan has evaded responsibility for its destiny. I don't think this movie is part of a propaganda campaign in the way the word is broadly understood. I mean, no one in any position has to bother to get it made or is particularly thinking about the movie in terms of Japanese policy. It can be described as propaganda as all hollywood movies can. But that's not really connected to Japan, per se. I think Japan as a "puppet" is a pretty straightforward deal these days - connected to a longstanding relationship between the power structures. It wasn't the U.S. that whacked the DPJ for making small overtures away from political orthodoxy. Rather, it was Japanese bureaucrats who are more conservative than conservatives and probably only see nationalism as a means to an end.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Unbroken is a good film, I saw it recently. I didn't think it was anti-Japanese at all, it just had the one Japanese character who used his position as a guard to inflict misery and suffering on his prisoners - and that character was in fact a real person who acknowledged that he did those things and even attempted to justify them.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Maybe, just a little fact that most of Gaijin-sans here don't care, and some Japanese do care about. Some anti-Korean Japanese people, Ken-Kan,嫌韓, kind of reaction to Anti-Japan Koreans, are not happy about that movie. Why? because the guy, MIYAVI, 雅,who played a role as a brutal Japanese soldier,big bird, is not even Japanese but Korean decendent, second generation of Korean, 在日2世, living in Japan. You see? after the endless anti-Japan move from Koreas, the position of Korean decendents living in Japan are very sensitive. Anti-Korean Japanese are not happy and not appreciate about Korean decendent,not japanese actor, shown up screen as japanese and playing a role to show people around the world just how bad Japanese was , and extending his carrer as actor.

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

the guy, MIYAVI, 雅,who played a role as a brutal Japanese soldier,big bird, is not even Japanese but Korean decendent, second generation of Korean, 在日2世, living in Japan. You see?

No, not really. For several reasons:

Firstly, Miyavi was born and raised a Japanese citizen in Japan to a Zainichi father and a Japanese mother. The guy is Japanese.

Secondly, regardless of Miyavi's specific case, characters don't have to be played by people of the same nationality or ethnicity. Mandela was played by an American; Ghandi was played by a Brit; etc etc

Finally, it wouldn't even be historically inaccurate for a 1940s IJA prison guard to be played by a Zainichi Korean anyway. Korea was part of Japan at the time and many Koreans were in the IJA; some of the IJA's war crimes were committed by Koreans.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

tinawatanabeFEB. 07, 2016 - 10:44PM JST atrocities on a scale close to that of the Nazis What is evidence? All you have is hearsay. Japan lost the war and the winners grossly exggerated it.

Tina, not sure if you are just trolling or serious - your views are so grossly distorted. Sure, it is true that history is somewhat kinder to the victors, but to say that it is just 'hearsay' that Japan committed horrific crimes against humanity on a massive scale is simply false - the eyewitness accounts, videos, photos and documents are widespread and freely available to the public.

The fact you don't know this probably has something to do with the fact you live and were brought up in Japan.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

@hachikou Basically: what Yoshitsune said. Here's what Linda Park said about playing a Japanese character on Star Trek Enterprise: "I actually am offended, to be honest, by that question...if I could, Lord, I would put myself in a Henry James adaptation film...I’ll take whatever I can get because I’m an actor." There is still freedom of expression in some places and they don't have to cast according to narrow minded people's limited perceptions of life. @igloobuyer, et al: Probably we should stop responding to "tinawatanabe" because he never answers back. The behavior is trollish: drop in, say something ridiculous, avoid responding to to inquiry. It's baiting. Some of the other uyoku here try a little harder.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The movie celebrates a man who, as the title suggests, was unbroken.

It is not about Japan. Japan is only one of the many things that the man had to overcome to survive.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Agreed

2 ( +3 / -1 )

What is evidence? All you have is hearsay. Japan lost the war and the winners grossly exggerated it

Japan's atrocities, e.g. Nanjing, Unit 731, and the Death Railway, are well-documented and cannot credibly be denied. Though it can be argued, for example, that the Chinese figure of 300,000 for Nanjing is an exaggeration, that does not mean that the Nanjing massacre was a fabrication based on hearsay. There is a huge amount of documentary evidence of what happened in Nanjing, and non-Chinese / non-Japanese historians say that 150,000 - 200,000 people died there.

As for the actions of "the Bird" Watanabe, the man himself acknowledged in an interview that he did beat and abuse his prisoners. Unbroken is not based on hearsay.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

I am not against the movie, smith. So you and others simply avoid the point of my topic.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

“Unbroken” is based on the true story of Zamperini,

Can anyone tell me which part of the movie is true and which part is fiction?

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Tinawatanabe. Where are you? Alex80 Where are you? Come on defenders of the Japanese lie. We are waiting for you. Prove something with evidence. We are waiting. Anything. Do what another posters did. Confess what your people did. Just a tiny bit. We are waiting.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Can anyone tell me which part of the movie is true and which part is fiction?

http://nypost.com/2014/12/21/is-all-of-the-powerful-tale-unbroken-really-true/

The Post called upon experts in endurance, survivalism and torture to weigh in on some of the book’s more ­incredible claims.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

@CH3CHO

You just posted a link answering your own question. Why are you asking us?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

CH3CHO FEB. 08, 2016 - 05:35PM JST Can anyone tell me which part of the movie is true and which part is fiction?

There is a certain misdirected notion in Japan that westerners do not know the true wartime history as told by Japan, and Japanese could teach westerners on true account of what happened during the Sino-Japanese War and WWII. A movie like this Unbroken serves as a chilling reminders that Americans are not fools to be taken advantage of by Japanese rightwinger's smoke screen. The U.S. has its own memory, which is similar to what Chinese, Koreans, and other former victims of Imperial Japan remember.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

turbotsatFEB. 08, 2016 - 05:38PM JST

You just posted a link answering your own question. Why are you asking us?

The experts in the link study only five questionable points in the 2 hour + film. The link does not give an entire picture.

I just wanted the knowledgeable people here to guide me. And I am sure everyone here agrees which is which.

sfjp330FEB. 08, 2016 - 05:43PM JST

Since you are so confident of your knowledge, I am looking forward to your explanation as to which part is true and which part is fiction.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

CH3CHO FEB. 08, 2016 - 06:26PM JST Since you are so confident of your knowledge, I am looking forward to your explanation as to which part is true and which part is fiction.

It's true that they made it Hollywood.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

sfjp330FEB. 08, 2016 - 06:50PM JST

It's true that they made it Hollywood.

I do not know if I understand you, but you mean "Unbroken" is all fiction?

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

CH3CHO FEB. 08, 2016 - 06:53PM JST I do not know if I understand you, but you mean "Unbroken" is all fiction?

Do you know any true life movie that is 100 percent accurate? I don't know of any. Do you?

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Alex80: "I am not against the movie, smith. So you and others simply avoid the point of my topic."

The point of your topic is that we should forget about what happened in the past if Japan was the aggressor because you don't like hearing about it. You can't backtrack on that, Alex.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

CH3CHO: The experts in the link study only five questionable points in the 2 hour + film. The link does not give an entire picture.

I wouldn't expect any Hollywood film to give an entirely true picture.

But, I wouldn't expect the 'experts' to just stop at five, unless they couldn't find any more. Having started on a theme, the author of the link would've found everything he could have, to disagree with and to support his thesis.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

turbotsatFEB. 09, 2016 - 05:45AM JST

I wouldn't expect any Hollywood film to give an entirely true picture.

But, I wouldn't expect the 'experts' to just stop at five, unless they couldn't find any more.

They are experts of survival techniques.

http://nypost.com/2014/12/21/is-all-of-the-powerful-tale-unbroken-really-true/

The five topics were picked by the editor. So, the editor would have had to pay more to get more than five comments.

In addition, no history expert was called in the panel. So, you cannot assume the history side.

I also do not expect an entirely true Hollywood picture. That is why I am asking.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

They're really paid by the comment?

I wouldn't expect them to be paid at all. Their pay is the free publicity they get by being quoted in the article. If they balk at no pay, lots of other experts would do it for free.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

CH3CHO FEB. 09, 2016 - 11:16AM JST I also do not expect an entirely true Hollywood picture. That is why I am asking.

So you answered your own question. Great news.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The movie ignored the story of Zamperini’s life AFTER he was released from the Japanese Prison. It was all about torture and pain, as a POW

Hello? the movie is called "unbroken" it is not about Zamperini's salvation

I saw the movie and I liked it... although I'd say that the main character was more obstinate than unbroken...

0 ( +1 / -1 )

This is documentary after Mr Zamperin's retrun to US. If Angelina introduce about this in unbroken , Japanese accept her film. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jY9VwCE_Dsg

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Secondly, regardless of Miyavi's specific case, characters don't have to be played by people of the same nationality or ethnicity. Mandela was played by an American; Ghandi was played by a Brit; etc etc

Don't forget that Schindler was played by an Irish guy

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Sometimes the truth hurts.

But running away from it or pretending it doesn't exist solves nothing.

What should be noted was that Zamperini held no grudge towards Japan.

We have all made mistakes in the past. Learn and move on.

Never deny!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites