The Founding of A Republic

Chronicles of the events leading up to the birth of the People’s Republic of China were told in this epic movie which features lots of cameo appearences of famous stars like Andy Lau, Jackie Chan, Jet Li, Zhang Ziyi and many other stars. Ironically, none of them took the lead role in the movie that was made to mark PRC’s 60th anniversary.

First of all, there are opinions that consider this movie as a mere propaganda for the Communist Party, but this review will look at this movie as a movie, not more, not less.

The scale of this movie was remarkable. Events were illustrated impressively and the sets and costumes were awesome. Added with excellent cast and their performances, this is actually a movie worth watching.

Leading the cast was Tang Guoqiang who filled the role as Mao Zedong perfectly. Other lead cast that featured frequently throughout the movie were Zhang Guoli as Chiang Kai-shek and Liu Jin as Zhou Enlai. Noticeable performances were also delivered by Chen Kun (as Chiang Ching-kuo) and Xu Qing (as Soong Ching-ling or Madame Sun Yat-sen). Cameo appearances by famous Hong Kong actors/actresses were Andy Lau (as Yu Jishi), Jet Li (as Chen Shaokuan), Donnie Yen (as Tian Han), Jackie Chan (as a reporter), Eva Huang (as a Xinhua News Agency broadcaster), Tony Leung (as one of the CPPCC members), and Zhang Ziyi (as Gong Peng).

Perhaps the weak point of this movie is the pace of the storyline which is too fast. Yet, this is not surprising since there are too many events to be told in a very limited time (the movie itself is 138 minutes in length). It is too easy to get lost in the details for about two-third of the movie, especially when the viewer does not able to understand the language and must rely on the English subtitles. The pace slowed down a bit later in the final third of the movie, but probably too many details were already lost.

Despite its weak point, this is a grand movie that should be able to entertain the audience with its remarkable production sets and exceptional acting from its star-studded cast. I believe this movie deserves a 9.0 after all.
Directed by Huang Jianxin and Han Sanping
Written by Baoguang Chen & Xingdong Wang
Starring: Tang Guoqiang, Zhang Guoli, Liu Jin, Chen Kun, Xu Qing, Wang Xueqi, and many, MANY others
Release year: 2009
IMDB Rating: 5.6

blog comments powered by Disqus