Feng Xiaogang's Epic '1942' Premieres

2012-11-26 15:08:08    m.cri.cn    Web Editor: Xie Tingting

(From left to right) Cast member Adrien Brody, screenwriter Liu Zhenyun and director Feng Xiaogang pose at the premiere ceremony of the film "Back to 1942" in Beijing on Sunday, November 25, 2012. [Photo: CFP]

Chinese epic film "Back to 1942" premiered on Sunday, November 25, 2012 in Beijing with no applause, but director Feng Xiaogang said that was his goal in making the film.

The film, featuring an all-star cast that includes American actors Adrien Brody and Tim Robbins, recalls the year 1942 when a deadly famine hit wartime China's Henan Province.

The preview screening ended with the audience's silence instead of applause, which was rare for a movie by Feng, a popular director with many bankable films to his name. Some viewers later said they were depressed by the tragic story.

Feng agreed that his film created a gloomy atmosphere that viewers would find hard to shake off. "It is not a movie that needs applause. It makes the audience think," he said.

Brody, who plays an American journalist witnessing the famine, said despite the film's darkness, it delivers an optimistic message. "A film like this is an opportunity for us to learn from the mistakes of the past, and not let history repeat itself."

He said "Back to 1942" reminded him of the 2002 film "The Pianist", which made him the youngest Best Actor Oscar winner. "Both the stories share the fact that human spirit has the ability to prevail and triumph even in the face of such darkness, and that is a positive, beautiful message."

"Back to 1942" is slated to hit regular and IMAX screens in China on November 29.