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Empire of the Sun
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Empire of the Sun

Description
Jamie Graham, a privileged English boy, is living in Shanghai when the Japanese invade and force all foreigners into prison camps. There his noble spirit allows him to survive the hardships and even regard his imprisonment as an exciting adventure.
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Empire of the Sun
CRITICS OF "Empire of the Sun"
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David Sterritt
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October 26, 2016

[Empire of the Sun] has too much childish buoyancy to serve the disturbing historical events it's ostensibly based on.
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Gene Siskel
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October 26, 2016

This is derivative melodrama with Spielberg hedging his bets by ripping off his previous adventure films to lighten a story that cries out not to be turned into a comic book.
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Dave Kehr
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October 26, 2016

Empire of the Sun wants very badly to be a great film, though as Steven Spielberg really ought to know by now, wishing doesn't make it so.
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Jonathan Rosenbaum
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October 26, 2016

The pseudomystical vagueness that seems to be Spielberg's stock-in-trade stifles most of the particularity of the source.
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Richard Corliss
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May 17, 2009

Spielberg has dreamed of flying before, and this time he earns his wings.
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Dennis Schwartz
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August 21, 2014

Spielberg knows how to tell a story and this one is worth telling.
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Tim Brayton
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April 07, 2013

The best mix in his directorial career between typical Spielbergian flourishes of audience-friendly spectacle and seriousness of intent.
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Cathy Burke
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August 23, 2016

Empire of the Sun is a breathtaking movie in its scope and energy. It's just that, true to its childlike quality, this film is just a little too over-anxious to get its point across.
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Joanna Berry
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October 26, 2016

Now considered a trial run for the more moving, horrifying and involving Schindler's List, Steven Spielberg's drama, set in China during the Second World War, is a glossy and rather tame affair.
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Sheila Benson
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October 26, 2016

The film's grave problem is a lack of central heating: We don't have a single character to warm up to.
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Variety Staff
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June 02, 2008

No special use is made of the talents of Miranda Richardson, Nigel Havers, Joe Pantoliano and the others, so it is up to young English thesp Bale to engage the viewer's interest, which he does superbly.
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