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Devils on the Doorstep
Devils on the Doorstep
Actors: Wen Jiang, Kenya Sawada, Yihong Jiang, Teruyuki Kagawa, Ding Yuan
Director: Wen Jiang
Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy, Drama, Military & War
UR     2005     2hr 19min

Winner of the Grand Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival, and banned in its native country, Jiang Wen?s ravishingly photographed anti-war epic is set in 1945 in a Japanese-occupied rural Chinese village. Wen stars as Ma ...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Wen Jiang, Kenya Sawada, Yihong Jiang, Teruyuki Kagawa, Ding Yuan
Director: Wen Jiang
Creators: Wen Jiang, Hua Zhang, Fengwei You, Haiying Li, Jianquan Shi, Ping Shu, Xing Liu
Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy, Drama, Military & War
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy, Drama, Military & War
Studio: Homevision
Format: DVD - Black and White,Color,Widescreen - Closed-captioned,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 04/19/2005
Original Release Date: 01/01/2000
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2000
Release Year: 2005
Run Time: 2hr 19min
Screens: Black and White,Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 5
Edition: Special Edition
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Languages: Cantonese
Subtitles: English

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Movie Reviews

Robin Simmons | Palm Springs area, CA United States | 04/01/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)


A masterpiece of recent Chinese cinema, Jiang Wen's DEVILS ON THE DOORSTEP (Home Vision Entertainment) has two big endorsements: it won the Grand Jury Prize at Cannes and was banned in China.

It's 1945. The Japanese army occupies a tiny north Chinese village. Ma Dasan (played by director Wen) is a peasant, who, one night at gunpoint, unexpectedly finds himself responsible for two Japanese soldiers bound in bags. One hostage wants to be killed, while the other, his interpreter, wants to live. Time passes and everyone around Dasan wants him to kill his prisoners, but he has another plan. What starts out as a howling farce, quickly turns fiercely harrowing.

Jiang Wen has not been allowed to make another film. This is a great looking black and white film. Its rich and bold cinematography perfectly matches its subject matter.

This work of by one of China's greatest filmmakers is not to be missed.
Six Stars (my wish)
Mastorna | Dominican Republic | 10/02/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I could not give a better review to this movie. ( no more stars available to give).
after viewing it, I thought it was indeed movies like this one what makes collecting them worthwhile.
The quality of this film rests above the accomplishment of its fundamental subject and inclination, it goes beyond conventions, delivering an extremely creative approach to the delicate and still latent issues regarding the Japanese invation of mainland Asia. This movie has one of the most dramatic and well structured endings I have ever seen.... it wraps everything up in the most masterly way. Every piece falls in place, either with uttermost dignity or brutality.

Europeans have well assimilated the plain facts of WWII. Dutch and Germans often mock eachother, although it is in generally meant as joke. This is not the case of Asia, It is still, sadly, much more "emotion" than pragmatism and honest understanding of history. This movie shows, the inner gohsts of the ruthless Japanese Asian conquest campaign.

Script structure: Flawless, Photography: impeccable, direction: pristine, editing: superb."
Forgotten Classic
Mr. P. Johnson | London | 08/29/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"For any fan of Kurosawa, or more recent Chinese Cinema, this will prove a delightful discovery. Sumptuous scenery around the Great Wall provides the backdrop for this most-forgotten of Wartime theatres. The sense of claustrophobia and at times, sheer terror, is well-portrayed by a cast unknown to Western viewers.
A lesson in betrayal and lost trust. Highly recommended."
Interview? Filmography?
Jisong Yi | San Jose, CA | 04/27/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Just watched this film. Where's the interview and filmography?

Great film though... to Chinese and Japanese audience who haven't seen this, this film is different than any film ever done about the war between the two counturies, it makes all other film i've seen about the subject matter, to quote Soderbergh "small". it's so much more than those films, so much more than that war, than any war in general really."