Two weeks after Hong Kong’s Legislative Council passed an act that gives local officials the authority to ban movies “deemed contrary to the interests of national security,” China announced the premier of its Korean War propaganda film The Battle at Lake Changjin in Hong Kong and Macao.
According to China’s state-run Global Times, The Battle at Lake Changjin will debut in Hong Kong on Thursday. However, no dates have been set yet.
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP), has not spared any effort to boost the box office for the film. It depicts brave but inept Chinese soldiers defeating US troops in the Korean War. CCP provided state funding for the movie and a staggering amount of state media free to promote it. The CCP also strongly suggested that all Chinese citizens have an obligation to see the film at least once. Moreover, the repressive regime made sure that The Battle at Lake Changjin was the only movie showing in certain theaters.
The Battle at Lake Changjin‘s historical accuracy is an issue that has sparked some doubts among critics. Unfortunately, the CCP chose to utilize its iron hand by arresting pro-Democracy activists who dare question the propaganda film.
Protesters in Hong Kong could face the same fate as their mainland counterparts as they are now covered by the tyrannical Chinese courts. Those who criticize China’s nationalist epic, released on the eve the 100th anniversary of the CCP, would be considered a seditious threat and subject to prosecution under the Beijing law.
South Koreans are furious at the Chinese blockbuster that celebrates the rise to nuclear-armed dictatorship to their north. They don’t hesitate to attack historical errors.
“China is very powerful economically and they are becoming more aggressive toward their neighbors, and it appears they think that power gives them the right to alter history. I think that [South] Korean people are angry and disappointed about this,” Seoul lawyer Han Ye-jung told Deutsche Welle (DW) last month.
DW reported that in September, South Korean war veterans prevented the release of The Sacrifice, a Chinese movie about the Korean War. Based on this recent sentiment, the chances of The Battle at Lake Changjin being shown in South Korean theaters are slim.
“It is an anti-national act that goes against the system of liberal democracy to show to our young people today a propaganda film describing Chinese soldiers as heroes when they were actually part of a war that infiltrated our country,” the Korean War Veterans Association said in a statement.