The Chinese melodrama Chosin Reservoir, which is based on a battle during the Korean War, hit the box office bringing in revenue of over 2 billion yuan (US$0.3 billion) within five days of its release amid the Chinese government’s propaganda and heightened anti-American sentiment.
It has been a tradition of the Chinese film industry to release “patriotic” blockbusters during the National Day holiday period. Since 2019, the 70th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China, it has become standard to release three films at once for the holiday. Chosin Reservoir was the most eye-catching of the three this year. It depicts the battle in November of 1950 during the Korean War, where the Chinese army suffered heavy casualties due to the assault of the U.S.-led United Nations forces and the cold weather.
The three-hour war drama, costing up to 1.3 billion yuan (US$0.2 billion), with a total staff of over 12,000 people, was shot over a period of 180 days. Schools and workplaces organized students and employees to see the movie. Stories of emotional viewers have flooded China’s social media. Many audience members said they walked out of the theater with tears in their eyes.
There were critical reviews of the film, but they were soon taken down from the Internet.
Source: Central News Agency, October 5, 2021