Directed by William Guttentag, Dan Sturman
Starring Rosalind Chao, Stephen Dorff, Mariel Hemingway
Release Date: Dec. 12, 2007
The Raping of Nanking isn’t a figure of speech to the people in Nanking. Narrated by actors but made primarily of firsthand accounts by survivors of the Nanking atrocities, Nanking is bound to educate, enlighten, and horrify.
In 1937, long before the Americans entered World War II, the Japanese invaded China. They bombed most of Nanking. The rich people fled like rats from a fire, leaving the poor and infirmed to fend for themselves. Missionaries from all over the white world decided to stay during the attack to provide a refuge and place for medicine, food, and shelter to those people left behind. They started a safe zone in hopes the Japanese would respect it and the poor people of Nanking would be safe. They did not. It is estimated during that time that 20 thousand rapes occurred in less than six weeks and 200 thousand people were killed in the same time. Many of the murders and rapes were done in front of family members in particularly brutal fashion. Days turned into months and the torment didn’t stop.
Nanking is framed by the real-life stories of missionaries and business people of the west who were living in the Chinese city of Nanking at the time of the Japanese invasion. Their letters, often downright poetic, describe in detail what they witnessed as third-party observers. Hope dwindles into fear and finally into raw accountings of stories, their own and those passed to them.
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