Solntse (The Sun) (2005)

Solntse (The Sun) (2005)



Critic Consensus: Certainly not for the impatient, Aleksandr Sokurov's deliberately paced look at Hirohito in the waning days of World War II is both enlightening and admirable in its restraint.

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Movie Info

The events surrounding Japanese emperor Hirohito's August 1945 call for a complete cease fire among his troops serves as the subject of Alexander Sokurov's thought-provoking historical drama. In the aftermath of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Emperor Hirohito (Issey Ogata) announces to the world that Japan will surrender unconditionally. His declaration was broadcast over the radio on August 15, 1945, and stunned the Japanese people. In this film, Sokurov details not only the events surrounding the emperor's declaration of surrender, but his renunciation of divine status as well.
Art House & International , Drama
Directed By:
Written By:
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Lorber Films


Issei Ogata
as Shouwa-Tennou Hirohito
Robert Dawson
as General Douglas MacArthur
Robert M. Dawson
as General MacArthur
Kaori Momoi
as Empress Kojun
Shiro Sano
as The Chamberlain
Shinmei Tsuji
as Old Servant
Taijiro Tamura
as Scientist
Georgiy Pitskhelauri
as MacArthur's Warrant Officer
Hiroya Morita
as Prime Minister Suzuki
Toshiaki Nishizawa
as Yonai, Minister of the Navy
Naomasa Musaka
as Anami, Minister of the War
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for Solntse (The Sun)

All Critics (36) | Top Critics (11)

Working from Yuri Arabov and Jeremy Noble's script, Sokurov has a wonderful time not simply with Hirohito and history, but with his filmmaking, which can be oblique to the point of being stultifying. Here he plays with scale.

Full Review… | April 1, 2010
Boston Globe
Top Critic

Alexander Sokurov's The Sun demands and rewards patience.

Full Review… | March 25, 2010
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

The Sun took four years to reach American theaters, but the long delay hasn't diminished the force of Sokurov's experimentation.

Full Review… | November 19, 2009
AV Club
Top Critic

First shown at the Berlin Film Festival four years ago, The Sun is finally receiving its welcome American theatrical release, which means that one of the best movies of 2005 is now also one of the best of 2009.

November 19, 2009
New York Times
Top Critic

Though he successfully humanizes Hirohito, who is shown happily shedding his divinity, Sokurov doesn't entirely exonerate him.

Full Review… | November 17, 2009
Village Voice
Top Critic

As usual, Sokurov's unhurried pacing will test the patience of more fidgety viewers, although the script is more accessible than some of his recent efforts.

Full Review… | February 10, 2006
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Solntse (The Sun)


A fascinating insight into the life of a human God. The Sun touches on cultural Japanese tradition colliding with modernity, without ever ignoring the realities of it's historic context.

The Bad Guy
The Bad Guy

Like a long, pretentious play, recorded on film with absolutely no amendments for the new medium. Very hard to sit through, with some interesting moments, great acting by the Japanese actors, horrible and lazy American performances.

E. Cutler
E. Cutler

Rich dramatization of the last few hours of WWII from Hirohito's viewpoint is rich, simple, and evocative. The meeting with McCarther is classic, and rarely has the situation of two cultures coming together been depicted so well.

vittorio carli
vittorio carli

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