The sympathies of the film are kind of f-ed up. Two barbaric parties fight each other but only one of them can walk in slow-mo while heroic music underlines their questionable deeds. Well I guess thats what you call Nationalistic. Didn't like it at all.
Well intentioned and earnest epic tells the little known tale of Taiwan's aboriginal Seediq tribe that revolted against Japanese rule in 1930, resulting in a bloody, 50 day battle and nearly annihilated the entire tribe. Features some striking imagery and some undeniably stirring moments, but is hampered by a weak script and an overlong, awkward structure.
On one hand, condensing two films into one makes the abbreviated version feel chaotic and at times incoherent, a feeling that is heightened by the choppy editing. At the same time, I saw enough here in the shortened cut that I don't think I'd want to experience two full-length films of this story. "Seediq Bale" makes humanity seem like a futile effort - a nonstop montage of war, suicide, beheadings, and slaughter.
Lucky, being able to watch the two part version, I found the first part - with the early life of Mouna Rado, the life under the occupation, & the tension building up to the first attack - to be more interesting than the second more action packed part
Unusual - and strangely uplifting film of a little known incident in Taiwan under Japanese rule. Filmed with passion and much beauty - the story shows the true warrior spirit in both the men and women of the doomed tribe.