The bit when Ken Watanabe finds out all is lost and the young lad tells him he has a wife and they had a baby but he’s never seen his kids face. Then the government play a live broadcast over the radio from Nagano (his home-town) kid’s choir singing that song about having to do ones best.. 😰
Watanabe is amazing in it, so is the young lad (he was a boy band member, hadn’t acted before) and Clint Eastwood delivered something very special which hopefully popped the bubble that the Japanese were all mad sadists. In the main they were just lads like us. Powers that be were wankers, but the general public got swept along on having to do one’s bit. Thankfully this film delivers this point in spades. My little one’s great granddad was a Kamikaze. They just got a knock one day for being a good engineer, or a train driver and were taught to fly. Very little of that generation lived to tell their tale. Clint did a very good job here of getting under the skin of that reality, whilst not using the tired comic-book caricature of the west’s view of a “Japanese soldier.”
I always feel uncomfortable watching war stuff over here, but this was respectfully done..