Thursday, January 19
From internationally celebrated director Zhang Yimou (Ju Dou, Raise the Red Lantern, Hero, House Of Flying Daggers) comes a story of love and war - and a band of outcasts who emerge as unlikely heroes from the shadows of a city's occupation. At once lyrical and visceral, the film enters the apocalyptic world of Nanjing in 1937 only to find a vibrant human story about the invisible people of the city and a series of unexpected relationships that lead to a resonant act of sacrifice.
It begins when the danger in the streets of Nanjing throws together a group of opposites --a flock of shell-shocked school children, a dozen seductive courtesans, and a renegade American (Academy Award winner Christian Bale, The Fighter, The Dark Knight) posing as a priest to save his own skin, or so he thinks - all seeking safety behind a walled cathedral. Trapped by marauding soldiers, over the next few days the prejudices and divides between them will fall away as they unite around a last-ditch plan to protect the children from impending catastrophe.
Shot over 5 1/2 months in the most extensive production ever undertaken in China, the film recreates the reality of Nanjing after Japanese troops invaded the Chinese city, setting off one of the most shocking episodes of civilian suffering in the modern history of war. Yet THE FLOWERS OF WAR is not so much about the deadly battles in the street as it is about all the life that continues to go on behind the closed doors of a city in hiding.
THE FLOWERS OF WAR is in theaters on Friday, January 20.