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Warriors of the Rainbow: Seediq Bale Part 2 (賽德克.巴萊[下]:彩虹橋)

“The Rainbow Bridge” (彩虹橋), the second half of director Wei Te-sheng (魏德聖)'s epic film “Seediq Bale” (賽德克.巴萊), is packed with more action but is also more convoluted and weaker in character development.

By the end of the first episode, “The Sun Flag” (太陽旗), grievances under Japanese rule culminates in the masterfully recreated 1930 Wushe Incident (霧社事件), the last major uprising against colonial Japanese forces in Taiwan. The fate of the Seediq people seems sealed.

This second installment, which deals with Japanese retaliation, discord among Seediq factions and the Seediq's determination to die for their tradition, feels like a prolonged unraveling.

The Japanese set the Seediq clans against one another by leveraging historical feuds over hunting grounds and personal grudges between clan leaders Mouna Rudo and Temu Walis.

As Mouna Rudo leads six Seediq clans into prolonged combat, Seediq women hang themselves collectively to let the men continue fighting with enough supplies and without distraction.

Rains fall relentlessly as these women part with their children. Some youths already shoulder responsibilities of war, but in this moment they are just children being torn from their mothers.

Pawan Nawi, one such young warrior, says to Mouna in another scene: “Chief, look at the tattoo on our faces! We are no longer kids. Just let us join everyone else and put up a good fight against the Japanese! I am already so tired and I want a good night's sleep.”

Dakis Nobing and Dakis Nawi, who have attempted for most of their lives to assimilate under Japanese culture as Ichirou (花崗一郎) and Jirou Mikage (花崗二郎), end up taking the same impossible exit between rigid categories of identity.

Even Temu Walis, who liaises with the Japanese, exhorts his kinsmen: “Stop running away, and kill all the way till last drop of blood! Seize heads like a warrior and return to our ancestral home!”

October 21, 2011    mejcgsn@
Yup, in terms of a film...I’d be very surprised if Seediq Bale can be the winner in the Oscars foreign film category. I really hoped he didn't really end this epic film with an awkward shot of them walking on the rainbow bridge...but he did. But considering the crappiness of 海角七號 and the awkwardness and terrible story telling in that movie...I'm not very surprised.
October 21, 2011    mejcgsn@
I think the other chief was pressured into joining because Mouna Rudo was calling him out as a pussy. The way I saw it was that the other chief's tribe and young men were already fed up with their crappy lives and were oppressed by the Japanese to the point where they had nothing to lose and were ready to fight to the death. So if the chief didn't agree, he might get a mutiny on his hands.

It's great to think about the ethical implications of a movie, but sometimes we should just let it be because this is based on history and it shows a clash of worldviews. And, obviously the Seediq one allows for this "valor" that may or may not be validated with a more modern and post enlightenment point of view.
November 2, 2011    valeesin2010@
Seediq Bale is a great historical depiction (to represent a picture) to what the Taiwanese natives endured during the Japanese occupation. I agree that this movie series may not be an Oscar foreign film candidate or any other international film award. The movie was not filmed to gain world reorganization, instead, it is a film to give the Taiwanese natives a voice and share this voice with the people of Taiwan.

The article pointed out a number of specific dialogues and scenes that may or may not make the movie goer less engaging, relate, and or belief. Furthermore, the comments above are personal and I respect that, but it is stated out of modern day perspective where we embrace logic and reasoning much more so than spiritual beliefs. The film took us to that point in history, not them coming to our theater seats with popcorn and coke.

Overall this film is documented today to depict the struggle between men, not just any man, but the Taiwanese natives. I'm proud to say I am the descendant of our Taiwan natives and it's about f-ing time we have a voice.
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 Warriors of the Rainbow: Seediq Bale Part 2 (賽德克.巴萊[下]:彩虹橋) 
Courtesy of 果子電影

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