The Last Emperor (1987) Script

The war criminals will proceed in orderly fashion to the main waiting room and await instructions.

No talking! Obey the guards!

War criminals must proceed to the main waiting room!

Those caught talking will be severely punished!

The Emperor!

Your Majesty! Your Majesty! Your Majesty!

What do they think they're doing? Stop! It is dangerous!

Go back. Go back. Go!

Are you mad? They could kill us all!

Go! Go!

Open the door! Open the door!

Open the door! Open the door!


By the command of Her Imperial Majesty, also called, the compassionate, and the Blessed, the Respectful, and the Long-Living, the Empress Dowager commands.

Aisin-Gioro Pu Yi, son of Prince Chun, shall be transferred immediately to the Forbidden City and will remain in the great within, awaiting Her Majesty's decision. Respect this!

Ar Mo, I am giving you my son. My son is your son!

Quick! Quick!

I want to go home!

Look, look at all the camels. And look at the Forbidden City!

Give him to me.

Ar Mo!

Pu Yi, come here.

How small you are. Are you afraid of me? Everyone is.

I am the Grand Empress Dowager, and I have lived here for a long, long time.

And they call me the old Buddha.

This is Peony. Do you like her?

Men, you know, are not allowed in the Forbidden City after dark.

Even little men like you!

The only man who can live here is the Emperor.

But the Emperor is on high, riding the dragon now!

He died today!


These other men, they're not real men. They're all eunuchs.

And, now, they're all waiting for me to die.

That is why they're putting my bed in the middle of the room, under the black pearl.

Little Pu Yi, I have decided that you will be the new Lord of Ten Thousand Years.

You will be the Son of Heaven.

Are we going home, Papa?

Sssh! Sssh! Sssh! It will soon be over.



Papa, cricket!

Cricket! Cricket! Where's the cricket?

Ahh, he is my friend, Your Majesty. Safe and warm under my arm.

Kept me company on the long journey here.

Ahh, see? He is kowtowing to Your Majesty.

Now, he can be the Emperor's cricket!

Can't let anybody in!

His soup is getting cold!

Get out of here!

Where am I? In the People's Republic of China.

Why did you stop me?

You are a criminal! You must be judged.

I'm the Lord of Ten Thousand Years.


If you really wanted to die, you would have succeeded.

You will kill me anyway.

Whatever happens, you'll be kept alive until you have been judged.

Your Majesty, this is the Forbidden City.

Ah, look! This little one is Your Majesty's bedroom. This is where we are.

Am I going home today?

Not today, not yet. A-And here, look.

This is the Hall of Supreme Harmony where Your Majesty was crowned.

I give Your Majesty the Gate of Marshall Valor.

I give you the maju-gate the... gate! Yes.

Yes, and the Palace with the Loudest Heaven... and... yes.

Your Majesty, your Imperial bath is ready!

I don't like baths! I don't like baths! I don't like baths!

I don't like baths anymore! I don't like baths anymore!

I don't like baths! I don't like baths!

No bean curd today and no meat!

Is it true I can do anything I want?

Of course, Your Majesty!

Anything you want. You are the Lord of Ten Thousand Years.

Oh! Oh! Oh, no! Not in my face! Oh! Oh, no! No!

I'm the Son of Heaven! I'm the Son of Heaven!

Yes! Oh, yes! I am the Son of Heaven!

Ar Mo! I want to go home! I want to go home! I want to go home!

I want to go home, Ar Mo! I want to go home.

Once upon a time, there was a great tree and a great wind.

The tree and the wind were always fighting, but when wind came back, it was angrier and stronger then ever.


My lady, she is the new nurse.

This is good breast milk.

Hey! Come on, hurry!

And that's how you became my child.

I repeat.

Prisoners going to their cells will walk with their heads bowed. Keep your eyes on the ground!

No looking forward or to the side!

The guards will give you directions and tell you when to turn!

Eyes down! Move!

Pu Chieh.

Your guest is waiting to meet you, Your Majesty.

Also, your mother has arrived.

You have not seen your mother for many years, Your Majesty.

He is so small!

He is young, Your Majesty.

Go. Go!

The Emperor's brother, His Excellency, Pu Chieh.

Ar Mo.

Stay with me.

How's the health of His Majesty's mother?

It is better, thank you. How much His Majesty has grown!

My mother has not seen me for seven years!

Do you remember my face?


The night they came with the horses, I knew it would be like this.

My brother sees you every day!

Pu Chieh is very excited to meet you. He often talks about you.

We are all very proud of you.

The kite.

He chose this for you.


Some of my clothes are in these boxes.

This is the Imperial row.

My capes are in that big box.

What is that?

My medicines.

Pills for rectifying the vapors. Look, a chamber pot.

These are my birds.

That is my heater, and this is my camel.

They're turning away!

Of course! Ordinary people are not allowed to look at the Emperor!

I am too important.

Is it true that you can do whatever you want?

Of course, I can. If I am naughty, someone else is punished. One of them!


The Emperor will walk.

I have never met other children. Are they all like you?

I've got three sisters and two friends.

If you come to our house, you can play with us.

The Emperor never leaves the Palace.

We play games together!

I know a game, too! Run!

The ones in the boat are the high consorts. High consorts?

The wives of the Emperor before me.

They say they're my mother, but they're not! They're not!

We asked you for the books, so prisoners will have to pass this around or read it aloud.

The sooner you begin to learn, the better. This is a school.

History of the new popular democracy.

Pages 84, 85.

In February 1912, 2 000 years of Imperial rule came to an end with the abdication of the Manchoo Dynasty.

China became a republic.

It was the year of the Rat.

Are you interested in ancient history?


This is a prison.

A real prison.

I told you to start reading.

You, there, read aloud. Read!



According to the treaty between the empire and the first republic, the Emperor's taitou was retained and not abolished.

He would retain his palaces, and he paid an annual subsidy of four million dollars.

The republic also guaranteed to protect the Imperial tombs in perpetuity.

In return, the dynasty surrendered forever its right to rule the country.

Man, his nature originally good.

Let us see what the Emperor has done.

Your Majesty will do it again five times.

Five times!

Ten times.

Why are you wearing that? You are not allowed to wear yellow!

But this is ordinary yellow.

It is Imperial yellow! No, it is not!

We say it is! Only the Emperor can wear that yellow! Take it off!

No! Take it off!

No! And you're not the Emperor anymore!

There is a new Emperor now!

He has cut off his queue, and instead of a camel, he has got a car!

What did you say?

You're not the Emperor!


You're not the Emperor anymore!

Liar! Liar!

You're not the...


You're not the Emperor! How dare you!

Calm yourselves! Oh!

You're not the Emperor! How dare you!

No! Your Majesty! Calm yourselves!

Am I the Emperor or not?

Your Majesty will always be the Emperor.

You see? Prove it!

Big Foot, drink it! Go on, drink the green ink.

I will show you!

See? That is a car! He is the President of the Republic.

Why is this wall here, Lord Chamberlain?

It is just a wall, Your Majesty. Nothing has changed.

You are lying.

High Tutor, am I still the Emperor?

You will always be the Emperor inside the Forbidden City, but not outside.

I do not understand.

Outside China is now a republic, with a president.

Where is Ar Mo? Ar Mo?

You are all liars!

Let me say "good-bye"! Hurry! Hurry!

He's my child! Ah!

Ar Mo? Ar Mo?

I do not understand.

I do not understand.

Your Majesty is a big boy now.

He cannot have a wet nurse anymore.

It is much better like this. Much healthier.

But she is not my wet nurse.

She's my butterfly.

Ar Mo! Ar Mo!

Ar Mo! Ar Mo!

Ar Mo! Ar Mo!

This is the detention center of the Fushun Bureau of Public Security.

And I am the governor!

During the war, this was a Japanese prison.

Many of you may remember it.

Because you worked with the Japanese, you were responsible for building it, and you filled it with innocent people.

How could this happen?

Why did you betray your country?

What turned you into war criminals?

We believe that men are born good!

We believe that the only way to change is to discover the truth and look at it in the face.

That is why you are here.

You will begin by writing the story of your lives and by confessing your crimes.

Your salvation will lie entirely in the attitude you take!

I advise you to be frank and sincere.

Otherwise, things can still go very badly for you.

You have learned that song very quickly.

That is a good beginning.

It is snowing.

We must stick to the same story, or they will turn our words against us.

After a few years, the tiny republic had become as corrupt as the old Empire.

It fell quickly into the hands of ambitious generals and corrupt bureaucrats.

The era of the warlords had begun. By May 1919, when I received my appointment, China was in turmoil.

China awake.

Did you know they're now selling electoral votes on the stock market?

Nothing has changed with the republic, either inside or outside the Forbidden City.

Except for the bicycles. The students are angry.

But what can they do except shout?

The shops are closing.

Oh, so, they are.

Maybe we'll be late after all.

Shall we take a short cut?

Yes. Use our feet.

Remember, you're one of the first foreigners with an official post in the Forbidden City since Marco Polo.

It makes me very nervous.

The enemy.

Is there a dagger in my back?

Not yet.

My friend, it is not easy to forgive a foreign devil who knows Confucius better than they do.

And grows the finest peonies in Peking!

May the new tutor present himself!

Your Imperial Highness, the new tutor.

The Emperor is honored to welcome his tutor.

Your tutor is honored to have been chosen, Your Majesty.

One more time.

Your Imperial Highness, Mr. Reginald Fleming Johnston.

How do you do, Mr. Johnston?

How do you do, Your Majesty?

Now we will go to school.

Please begin the lesson.

Your Majesty, in my country, it would be usual to begin with some kind of an examination.

The Emperor cannot be examined.

Well, that may have to change.

But first, Your Majesty might like to ask me some questions.

Where are your ancestors buried?

In Scotland, Your Majesty.

But then, where's your skirt?

In your country, men wear short skirts, do they not?

No, Your Majesty, Scotsmen do not wear skirts. They wear kilts.


Kilts. A matter of words, perhaps, but words are important.

Why are words important?

If you cannot say what you mean, Your Majesty, you will never mean what you say.

And a gentleman should always mean what he says.

Ah, yes! A gentleman. Are you a gentleman?

I would like to be a gentleman, Your Majesty. I try to be.

I'm not a gentleman. I'm not allowed to say what I mean.

They are always telling me what to say.

Your Majesty is still very young.

I thought he might like to see some English and American magazines.

I have just received them.

I know that you know that I know that you know that, that is a dialog between Confucius and Chuang Tzu.

Concerning respect, Your Majesty.

Who is this "George Washington"?

A famous American, Your Majesty.

A revolutionary General, the first American President.

Ah! Like Mr. Lenin in Russia?

Not quite.

Does he have a car?

He lived a long time ago, Your Majesty.

I want a car.

I think your mouse is trying to escape, Your Majesty.

Please do not tell anyone about my mouse.

The lesson is finished.

Our official taster's a brave man.

Many of my ancestors have been poisoned, you know.

Does Your Majesty have lunch like this every day?

Oh, yes! Every day! Like theater!

I do not know why. It has always been like that.

This is my royal food.

Your Majesty! One hundred year eggs.

Snake bow.

Angel's hair.

Garlic sprout, steamed turtle, goat nipples...

There's a danger of poisoning pots.

My food comes directly from the high consorts.

Their tasters had already tried them.

It always arrives a bit cold.

How do they kill Emperors in the West?

The Austrian Emperor was shot, was he not?

No, but his nephew was assassinated before the Great War.

But the Russian Emperor had been shot. He was called the Tsar.

Yes. He took lots of our land in Manchuria.

I'm a Manchurian. Even after the republic, it's still my country.

The-uh... secret, Your Majesty, is emerging again.

Is something the matter, Your Majesty?

Something is happening.

Silence. Tell them to be quiet.



What is happening, Mr. Johnston?

Uh, nothing is happening. Quiet!

On my way here, Your Majesty, we were held up by students from the university.

They were protesting against the republican government, because it has agreed to give away Chinese territory to Japan.

Is it true, Mr. Johnston, that many people out there have had their heads chopped off?

It is true, Your Majesty. Many heads have been chopped off.

It does stop them thinking.

It is time for the Emperor's rest.

The students are right to be angry.

I'm angry!

But I'm not allowed to leave the Forbidden City.

I want to go out, Mr. Johnston!

My lord!

I want to see the city of sounds!

The Emperor awards you with the order of the Ruby Hat Button, and with the right to be carried in your own chair, with four bearers.

The last Emperor died on the same night as the Empress Guwalgiya, the night I was brought to the Forbidden City, when I was three.

The eunuchs think he was murdered, but who killed him.

And why? And who will kill me?

The chair, your excellency.

The traditional gift to eunuchs.

Many thanks. Be grateful.

If it is official practice, Always, sir, always, sir.

In which case, I would like an official receipt.


One, two, Three, four, five...

Emperor extends his apologies.

Please tell the Emperor that there is no offense.

Emperor who has been offended.

Ten, eleven, twelve, thirteen...

Even the bicycle was viewed with suspicion in the Forbidden City.

My present to the Emperor lead to a lot of trouble.

Change about!

I hope the Emperor has not forgotten that this is the day for his math class.

For Your Majesty!

My doctor says, "Bicycles are bad for you."

Bad for you, nonsense!

How does it work?

Oh, it's simple.

Head up and eyes forward! As in math!

My mother is dead, is she not?

Yes, Your Majesty.

I'm profoundly sorry!

I'm not.

She killed herself.

She swallowed the ball of opium.

I'm going to see her, and my brother.

Open the door. Open the door.

Open the door.

Fallen devil and fallen machine. Trouble! Nothing but trouble!

Look where you lead him! And you are an old, cruel, ignorant man.

The boy's mother is dead, and he's not even allowed to see her!

I want to go home!

I want to go home!

Stop it, stop it, stay where you are!

I want to go home!

Stop it, stay where you are!

You fool! Stay there!


Hunchback, Big Foot!

Sir? Give me your hand, sir. Give me your hand, sir!

Can you not see?

Look at my left ear, please, sir.

Thank you, and my right. Thank you.

Would you follow my finger, please, sir.

Just the eyes, Your Majesty, not the head.

Well, it's perfectly simple, Johnston. The Emperor needs spectacles.

Like Harold Lloyd!

Impossible! An Emperor does not wear spectacles!

That cannot be allowed!

Times have changed, Your Highnesses!

If His Majesty doesn't get spectacles, Johnston, he could lose his sight.

Now, please, could you show me the way out of here?

Your Majesty.

If the Emperor does not get spectacles, I will resign.

Unfortunately, our decision is final.

And, unfortunately, what I have to say will be published in every newspaper in China.

What do you have to say, Mr. Johnston?

The Emperor has been a prisoner in his own palace since the day that he was crowned and has remained a prisoner since he abdicated.

But now that he's growing up, he may wonder why he is the only person in China who may not walk out of his own front door.

I think the Emperor is the loneliest boy on earth.

It would be conveniently sad if he becomes blind.

Blind, Mr. Johnston?

To the expense, Your Excellency. To the cost of maintaining one thousand two hundred eunuchs, three hundred and fifty ladies-in-waiting and one hundred and eighty-five cooks to buying a hundred and twenty sable furs a month and three thousand chickens a week.

To the fact that eight hundred and forty guards and employees of the household department, plus one Lord Chamberlain, care only about one thing!

Filling their own rice bowls!

You are very good at accounts, Mr. Johnston!

The Emperor may have abdicated, but he's still a symbol of great importance to many people.

If I did not agree with that, I would not be here.

And some of us believe that one day soon, he may be more than a symbol.

The spectacles are a detail.

What do you really want, Mr. Johnston?

Just the spectacles.

The Princess Wan Jung, Your Majesty. Seventeen years old.

Princess Wu Chang, fifteen years old.

The princess De Li, Your Majesty, and the Princess Fung Ying.

The Princess Wang Ching.

The Princess Shilean, sixteen years old.

Who is this?

Princess Wen Hsiu, twelve years old.

She has got a funny face.

Not just one wife. One empress and one secondary consort.

Two wives? - But who did you choose to be the Empress?

They chose her! She's very old, Johnston! She's seventeen!

That's not so old, Your Majesty. What does she look like?

Old fashioned! I want a modern wife, Johnston, who speaks English and French!

And who can dance the quickstep!



I'm going to escape, Johnston.

I've got a suitcase, and a ticket to England.

I'm going to Oxford University.

Your Majesty, if you get married, you will become the master of your own house.

A wedding might be a more practical way to escape.

I suppose she's on her way by now.

It will be all right. They do everything for you.

Why did you never get married, Johnston?

Your Mongolian cousin Prince Demchukedamgruv has sent you twelve racing camels.

Plus this.

On behalf of Manchuria.

A lump of coal.


The secondary consort welcomes the Empress.

The Empress greets the secondary consort.

You are doing everything very well.

Thank you. I rehearsed many times.

What is His Majesty thinking?

I was thinking, if I was the real Emperor, I would become the ruler of China now.

And what would the Emperor do, if he could really rule?

I would change everything, even the way we get married.

Is the Emperor against arranged marriages?

It is humiliating not to choose whom you marry!

Even I was not allowed to choose.

And yet westerners might be amazed how much happiness can come from arranged marriages.

That is what old-fashioned women say, like the high consorts.

In another year or two, His Majesty will be taller than me.

Is it true the Emperor has a suitcase under his bed and is going to Oxford?

Will the Emperor take Wan Jung with him?

Perhaps he would like to see my face before he decides.

Yes, the Emperor would like to see the face of the Empress.

It is the Emperor who must remove the kait'ou.

I also had a tutor like Mr. Johnston.

Miss Windsor. She's American.

Miss Windsor taught me how to do the dance of the quickstep.

Does the Emperor know how to do the quickstep?

Will you teach me?

Leave us! Leave us!

If Your Majesty thinks it is old-fashioned to make the rain and the wind with a stranger, we can be like a modern couple, to begin with.

A modern couple?

Good night.

Good night.

You must come to Oxford with me.

I like him! I am sure I am going to like him!

And he will grow up!

Eyes down!

Report your arrival!

Prisoner 981 reporting.

Louder! Prisoner 981 reporting.

Open the door!

Close the door!

Sit down!


Aisin-Gioro Pu Yi.

Write it!

Now read that aloud!

Leniency to those who confess, severity to those who resist, Redemption to those who gain merits.

Now than, there are two types of confession.

We call them toothpaste and water tap.

The toothpaste prisoner needs to be squeezed every now and then or else he forgets to keep confessing.

The water tap man needs one good hard twist before he starts.

But then everything comes out.

Now, you're an intelligent person. I'm sure you understand me.

Good. Then we will begin.

Why do you think you are in here, 981?

I'm accused of being a traitor, a collaborator, and a counter-revolutionary.

It is not an accusation!

You are a traitor, you are a collaborator, and you are a counter-revolutionary!!

Did you write this? And you call it a confession?

This is nothing but a list of dates! A child's fairy tale!

What do you want me to confess?

You know what you did and what others did.

So why don't you volunteer the information?

I do not understand.

We don't tell people what to confess. We already know everything about you.


Go on.

I wanted reforms.

What did you want to reform?


Chang, you have a house outside the Forbidden City. Do you not?

Yes, Your Majesty. It has 20 rooms, I understand.

And you also have houses.

Oh, we all do, Your Majesty.

I recently learned that many pieces from the Imperial collections are on sale in antique shops in Peking. Is that true, Cheng?

Would you do me a favor, Wen Hsiu? Of course.

Stop growing.

The Forbidden City is a theater without an audience.

The audience left long ago when China became a republic.

Cut off my queue. Your Majesty! Please!

It is heavy!

The Emperor before me was murdered because he wanted to reform the empire.

Is that not so, Mr. Johnston?

Yes, Your Majesty, probably.

Well, let us see if they will kill me for reforming the Forbidden City.

Lord Chamberlain! I'm appointing Mr. Johnston's friend, the poet and scholar, Chin Hsiao Hsiu, to be the new Lord Chamberlain.

I want him to supervise a detailed inventory of the Imperial storerooms!

So that we can learn exactly how much has been stolen!

Can I sleep here? I am frightened.

You're brave. Are you not frightened?

I am excited. I do not want to escape anymore.

I want to rule.

Kiss me.

Can I stay with you as well?

Get in. Get in.

I used to play a game with the eunuchs.

Trying to guess who is who.

Now I cannot see you!

Wan Jung? Wen Hsiu?

Come underneath the sheet with us.

Your Majesty! The storeroom's on fire, Your Majesty!

Chang Chinghui, did you not write a poem about a spider who gets caught in his own web?

I did not know Your Majesty had read my poetry. I'm very honored.

I'm the spider.

The eunuchs set fire to this place to stop me knowing what they have stolen.

I'm going to expel them from the Forbidden City.

There are twelve hundred eunuchs, Your Majesty.

They have been here for eight hundred years.

It will be dangerous.

Do you think the republican government would help me?

The republicans will do almost anything if you know who to speak to.

It must happen quickly.

Before they burn the whole place with us inside.

I lived with them all my life, Johnston. They're my family.

Your Majesty, there is no alternative.

What is happening? I don't know.

What are they carrying?

Their organs.

Whatever their crimes, they cannot be deprived of the right to be buried as whole men.


I have forgot what I was saying.

You're wasting our time!

We want to know about the Japanese.

How did your friendship with the Japanese begin?

Who introduced you? When?

It was... I think it was the new Lord Chamberlain, Chin Hsiao Hsiu. It was 1924.

Parliament had been dissolved again. The president had fled.

At first, I thought it was just another a coup d'etat by just another warlord.

Only this time it was different. This time it was my turn.

Fifteen, love.


Your Highness, how shocking.

Thirty love.


Thirty, fifteen.

The rotten government of the republic is in flight!

Now we shall remove the foreign stench of the Manchurian rats who still hide in the Forbidden City.

Mr. Pu Yi and his family have been given one hour to leave the Forbidden City.

They will be escorted to the home of his father and remain there under guard as state prisoners until further notice.

What are you all looking at? What are you standing there for?

You always wanted to leave the Forbidden City.

Now you're got an hour to pack. So, go! Go!

I always thought I hated it here. Now, I'm afraid to leave.

Do you think they will kill me?

You must do as they say, Your Majesty, while I try to reach the British Embassy.

They will give you asylum there. I'm sure they will.

Chang, take my car to the South gate! I want you to drive His Majesty.

Your Majesty!

Please, Your Majesty!


But you didn't go to the British Embassy, did you?

You ended up at the Japanese Embassy.

The Japanese were the only people prepared to help me.

Help you for nothing?

Japan has an Emperor. We're almost the same age.

I thought it was kindness.

At the same time, I realized that, for many Chinese, I was an alien.

Simply because I am Manchurian.

There was even an anti-Manchurian league who wanted to assassinate me!

So, I went to live in Tientsin.

There was a nice provincial town with a big port.

In those days, we had a large, international settlement.

The Japanese thought it would be safer for me there.

If you had read the books we gave you more carefully, you might have learned that the anti-Manchurian league was largely financed by the Japanese.

It was designed to frighten you.

I did not know that at the time.

Cigarette? I do not smoke.

Were the Japanese paying for you in Tientsin?

Oh, no.

I had to rent a villa, the Villa Chan, and it was very expensive.

So were the bodyguards.

I spent a lot of money in Tientsin.

Did you still believe in a restoration of the Imperial system?

Others did. They were later caught and exiled.

I cannot remember how much jade and jewelry they made me spend to buy the friendship of some warlord or some white Russian general.

I even financed an English speaking newspaper.

They closed after three days. It was unreadable.

And what else did you spend your money on?

Oh, I was never tired of buying pianos, watches, radios...

As long as they were foreign!

Of course. Anything Western was good.

Especially Wrigley's chewing gum, Bayer aspirin, and cars.

While you were in Tientsin, most of China came under the control of General Chiang Kai Shek, the so-called Nationalists, the Kuomintang.

What were your relations with them?


I felt useless in Tientsin. I was twenty-one.

I dreamt of going to the West.

I became a playboy.

Am I blue. Am I blue.

Ain't these tears in my eyes telling you. Am I blue?

You'd be, too. If each plan with your girl done fell through.

Was a time, I was her only one.

But now I'm the sad and lonely one. Boo-Boo-Boo, Boo-Boo-Boo.

Now she's gone and we're through. Lord, I'm blue.

Very good. Well done.

That's a great ship, if you're going first-class.

I'm not going anywhere.

Would you like to dance?

You're a brave man. Nobody here would have danced with me.

Why is that?

Because I'm Chinese. Well, I'm American.

You say California. I say French Riviera.

San Francisco!

Monte Carlo! Are we really going this time?

Who's that couple? Oh, Henry and Elizabeth.

The Emperor of China? The ex-Emperor and his wife.

She's beautiful. Yes, very.

And who are you?

I'm His Highness's other wife.

His other wife? Number two wife.

Well, some people have the luck.

Ladies and gentlemen!

General Chiang Kai Shek has taken Shanghai!

The Kuomintang have broken with the Reds and have knocked them for six!

The Reds are finished!

Sorry about the reception, everyone!

It would be wiser to return to the Japanese delegation now, Your Majesty.

Your car is waiting. Thank you, Mr. Amakasu.

The general strike in Shanghai has collapsed.

The international settlement is safe.

Troops of the Kuomintang are now in full control of the city.

And firm steps are being taken to restore order in the native areas.

What do you think of General Chiang Kai Shek?

What should I think of him? He's just another warlord.

Well, he has mashed the Communists.

That's good. Except the Communists were his sworn allies until a few days ago.

I expect he betrayed them for money.

You want some gum, Elizabeth? Uh-huh.

Wen Hsiu, you want some gum?

I want a divorce.

I do not want to be your mistress any longer.

I thought you were my secondary consort.

In the Forbidden City, you were the Emperor and I was a secondary consort.

But now you are Henry Pu Yi.

Wan Jung is your wife, Elizabeth.

And who am I? I'm nobody.

I did not know you were so unhappy.

You can only have one wife in the West.

I want a divorce.

No one can divorce me!

I want a divorce!

Come inside with me?

Leave me alone.

Your Ladyship!

Thank you.

I do not need it!

I do not need it!

Wen Hsiu?

Elizabeth! Can I come in?

Don't you remember me? I'm dressed like a pilot, but I still can't fly! Not yet.

Eastern Jewel! We had dancing classes together!

Yes, just before your marriage.

Silly girl! Why do people want to get married?

Wen Hsiu has gone. She will never come back.

Is it so bad?

She was my only friend.

Well, at least now you've got your husband all to yourself!

And you've got me!

I'll be your friend.

You smoke opium? Be wicked.

It's the best in Shanghai! Why are you going to Europe?

The place to go is Japan! It's more fun than anywhere!

It's modern.

How do you know we're going to Europe? It is a secret.

Oh, I know everything!

I know Chiang Kai Shek has got false teeth.

I even know his nickname, "cash my check!"

I'm a spy. And I don't care who knows it.

A spy?

I work for the Japanese Special Service Bureau, and I've come to protect you.

The Japanese. They are getting closer to him every day.

He is sending his brother to the military academy in Tokyo.

They talk to him about Manchuria all the time.

And Mr. Amakasu never says hello to me.

I do not trust the Japanese.

Of course, I'd love to be the Emperor's new secondary consort!

Eastern Jewel.

If the post is available.

The post is vacant, my dear cousin.

But you do not fit the part!

Wen Hsiu left the dog behind. Do you want it?

It is my fault. It is all my fault.

I came to see you, Your Majesty, to give you bad news.

Something terrible has happened.

The Imperial tombs of our Manchurian ancestors have been attacked and robbed by troops of the Kuomintang. Chinese soldiers.

A warlord working for Chiang Kai Shek.

The body of the Empress Dowager was hacked to pieces.

Her pearl necklace has become a wedding present from Chiang Kai Shek to his new wife.

Prisoner 981 reporting.

Open the door!

Close the door!

Tell me, 981. Do you consider yourself to be Chinese?

Of course. What is this?


And what do you call this part of China?

The Northeast. - And what did you call it as a child?


Japan invaded Manchuria on September eighteenth, 1931 and began to set up a puppet state called Manchukuo.

Shortly afterwards, a Japanese delegation paid you a secret visit in Tientsin to request your collaboration, which you say you refused.

Speak up!

I've already told you. I have told you a hundred times.

Tell us again! Tell us two hundred times!

I refused to collaborate.

You say you refused, but a month later, on November tenth, 1931, there you are arriving in Manchuria, or should I call it Manchukuo?

Now, according to this so-called confession of yours, you didn't go of your own free will!

You insist that you were kidnapped by the Japanese!

Yes. And taken to Manchuria by force!

Yes! Sit down!

Do you remember a man called Reginald Fleming Johnston?

He was your tutor.


And a good friend, I believe.

After twenty-eight years in China, Mr. Johnston returned to England.

He became a professor of Oriental studies at London University, and he wrote a book. It is called Twilight in the Forbidden City, and it is dedicated to you.

I am going to miss you, Johnston.

I shall miss you, Your Majesty.

Do you think a man can become Emperor again?


Thank you, Your Majesty.

How can we say "Good-bye"?

As we said, "Hello."

Farewell, Mr. Johnston.

Farewell, Your Majesty.

All aboard! All aboard!

Thank you, sir.

Good-bye, Mr. Johnston! We'll never forget you, Mr. Johnston.

Good-bye! Mr. Johnston! Good-bye! Good-bye!

All aboard!

On page four-hundred and forty-nine, Mr. Johnston writes, The endeavor to make out that the Emperor had been kidnapped by the Japanese is wholly untrue.

He left Tientsin and went to Manchuria of his own free will.

Johnston was a liar!

What did you say? I didn't hear you.

Mr. Johnston had left before I was taken to Manchuria.

He could not have known what happened.

Sit down!

Is this your confession, 895?

Yes. According to this account, you prepared the man's things on the morning of November ninth!

Isn't it unusual for a man who's kidnapped to have his luggage packed by his valet the day before he's kidnapped?

This is what you've written, isn't it?

Who told you to pack this man's luggage?

These two stories don't fit, do they?

It was a long time ago. Perhaps I made a mistake.

You are lying!

You are both lying!

Control yourself!

My family was buried alive in Manchukuo.

My mother digged her own grave because of people like them.

Smash the enemies. Smash them forever.


These might help you to remember the truth.

What made you write that?

It is the truth.

Chen Pao Shen wishes you a safe journey.

You mean he refuses to say goodbye to me.

He will see me when he comes to my coronation.

Request a truce. In case you change your mind.

I am the hereditary ruler of the Manchurian people.

There can be no Manchukuo without me.

Do you not see? The Japanese are using you.

I must try to use them.

The Japanese invasion of Manchuria will be condemned by the League of Nations and by every civilized country on earth!

The Chinese Republic has broken every promise it ever made to me!

Chinese troops desecrated the tombs of my ancestors!

And Chinese troops did not defend Manchuria from the Japanese!

But Manchuria is still China!

China has turned its back on me.

Please, do not go.

Manchuria is the richest frontier in Asia!

Coal, oil, railways!

Millions of Chinese immigrants are going there every year!

I'm going to build my country.

Chen Pao Shen: If you go, you betray your country.

Which country?

Johnston was wrong, but he wasn't a liar.

There was no kidnapping!

You went to Manchuria by your own choice, because you wanted to be Emperor again!

You will rewrite your confessions from the beginning!


Take these people away!


To heaven.

To earth.

Chen Pao Shen is a fool. How could he miss the birth of a new country?

It looks like the inauguration of a factory.

To the moon.

To the sun.

You're an empress again.

What I'm going to be is a pilot!

I'm going to train at a secret base near Yokohama to learn precision bombing.

I want to bomb Shanghai.

Bomb Shanghai?

I hate China!

I hate you.

The Japanese Army High Command!

Very impressive!

The Japanese Army!


On behalf of the Emperor of Japan, the commander of the Kantong Army extends his warmest congratulations on the occasion of His Majesty's coronation.

Manchukuo will grow into a bright vision.

Japan will always be on the side of the Emperor.

Uh, may I introduce you? My wife, the Princess Hiro Saga.

Prime Minister Hsiao Hsiu.

Honorable Chang Chinghui, Minister of Defense.

The monseigneur, Monseigneur Colonna.

The Empress and I accept with great pleasure.

Excuse me, General.

Ahh! And now Mr. Amakasu. He's the new chief of the Manchuria Motion Picture Studio.

Why do you have to spoil this day? Why?

Mr. Amakasu is the most powerful man in Manchukuo.

What are you talking about?

You did not believe I could be Emperor again, but I am.

You are blind.

Do you know what it means to be an empress?

You are an empress!

Why do you not make love to me anymore?

Because you have become an opium addict.

Opium killed my mother. Opium destroyed China.

You can buy opium anywhere in Manchukuo!

Shut up! In any shop.

Shut up!

Your brother is going to have a child.

We must have a child. We must have an heir.

Emperor Hirohito has officially invited us to Japan.

I'm going alone. You are staying here.

I would never go to Japan.

Then go to your room!

Ten thousand years to His Majesty, the Emperor!

Ten thousand years!

Ten thousand years to His Majesty!

To His Majesty, ten thousand years!

I told you, I hate you.

Only because I give you what you need.

Now we're engaged.

Good morning. Good morning.

Good morning, sir.

You forgot my toothpowder.

Oh... yes, sir.

Move him!

981! Collect your things!

I said, collect your things!

Keep to the story. That is an order.



Your laces are undone. Do them up!

Thursday, you serve lunch.

Friday, you clean the toilet.

Saturday, you sweep the floor.

I have never been separated from my family.

You'd better get used to it!

It's not so bad. People get used to anything.

You do not remember me, do you?

I was the Minister of Trade, in Manchukuo.

You were all in Manchukuo.

Now I'm the cell leader.

It is important to follow the rules here.

No talking during study sessions!

Where is your gun, Captain? Where are their swords?

Our weapons have been removed, Your Majesty, on orders of Colonel Yoshioka.

Colonel Yoshioka?

Colonel Yoshioka!

What has happened here? Why has my guard been disarmed?

Yes, it is very unfortunate, Your Majesty.

There have been many changes while you were in Tokyo.

Your Majesty, may I present Masaomi Kobayakawa, the new Japanese Ambassador to Manchukuo.

Why is Prime Minister Hsiao Hsiu not here to receive me?

The Prime Minister has resigned, Your Majesty.

His son has been assassinated.

Assassinated? By communist bandits, Your Majesty.

I must see him at once.

He refuses to see anyone, Your Majesty. He has gone to a monastery, far away.

Who are you?

Chang Chinghui, Your Majesty, Minister of Defense.


Of course.

The council meeting will be at four o'clock, Your Majesty, before the state dinner.

The Emperor has been asked to sign the following.

After careful consideration, we have decided to nominate the Honorable Chang Chinghui as the new Prime Minister of Manchukuo.


Today, on our return from Japan, we wish to speak of something more important.

The future of our friendship with Japan.

This is based on mutual respect, and respect means equality and independence.

When the two Emperors stood together and saluted the two national flags, they recognized that Manchukuo had come of age.

Manchukuo is not a colony. Manchukuo is Manchuria.

The relationship between our two countries is like the relationship between these two Emperors.

It is rooted in paternal trust, in... in the desire to preserve our ancient traditions, and in a mutual respect for our national identities.

Already, we have welcomed the ambassadors of El Salvador, Costa Rica, the Vatican...

Soon I'm... I'm sure the other countries will follow.

Chang Chinghui was an idiot.

He thought the open board were there to decrease production.

But that was just propaganda.

What the Japanese really wanted was cash, more production!

Of course, they've gotten rid of him.

Well, I had been in the drug business all my life... opium, heroin.

I could deal with the green gang in Shanghai, even with Chiang Kai Shek.

That is why the Japanese wanted me to be Prime Minister.

You were right. I was blind.

I'm going to have a child. The father is Manchurian.

Colonel Yoshioka, Mr. Amakasu!

I did it for you!

His Majesty forgot to sign the appointment of the new Prime Minister, Mr. Chang Chinghui!

I did not forget.

When an Englishman robs someone, Your Majesty, he becomes a gentleman.

If he robs a lot, he becomes a knight.

Do you imagine the British run their Empire as a charity?

If India has to pay for the cost of its own occupation, so must Manchukuo.

We hope Manchukuo will have an heir. The Empress is expecting a child.

Yes, Your Majesty, we are aware of the situation.

This is the name of the father.

His name is Chang! He is your driver!

All the necessary facts have been recorded. The man will be punished.

The Emperor cannot allow his honor to be stained.

The Japanese are the only divine race on earth.

We will take China, Hong Kong, Indochina, Siam, Malaya, Singapore, and India!

Asia belongs to us!

How long have you been here?

Three years.

You were issued with the same clothes as everyone else.

Why can't you learn to look after yourself?

There have been complaints from your cellmates.

You must learn how to urinate at night without waking them all up!

The way to do it is to urinate against the side of the bucket, not into the middle!

Yes, comrade.

You still think I'm your servant, don't you?

This is the last time, the last time.

This is the last time.

Why do you think Big Li has been in prison all this time?

Or haven't you thought about it?

Because he was my servant.


Loyalty is a great quality, isn't it?

So do you think it is unjust that your loyal servant is punished for serving you?

I think it is not a question of justice.

It is a question of justice!

Even the servant has a choice.

Maybe he had nothing to do with the political decisions of Manchukuo or the crimes that happened around me.

He was the only innocent person there.

Sit down.

Carmen Li is now a free citizen of the People's Republic of China.

He is being released today.

You have a train to catch.

This is my wife. We had three children.

You know nothing about me.

Thank you.

For a long time, I thought you kept him in prison, because you wanted someone to look after me.

If you went out on the streets of China today, and people knew who you were, somebody would probably try to kill you!

You talk of your past as if you were the only one who suffered.

Stop hiding behind your private story.

Write it again! All of it.

We are all pretending. You are just pretending you have changed.

You cannot speak like that in here.

That is counter-revolutionary talk.

I know who you all are.

You were a captain of the Imperial Guard, and you become a spy in the palace.

You, the Minister of Trade, were responsible for the starvation in Manchukuo.

He... Prime Minister of Narcotics.

Shut up! The party teaches us to be new men!

We're working for a new China!

You worked in Amakasu's private office.

You are still the same people! People do not change.

Guard! Guard!


I let it happen.

Guard! Guard!

I let it happen.

The second edict, Your Majesty. Japanese will be the official language in Manchukuo schools.

Your Majesty!

The baby was born dead, Your Majesty.

How is the Empress?

It would be better if she goes to a clinic, somewhere warm.

She's already left, Your Majesty.

Open the door.

With Manchukuo now firmly in their grasp, the Japanese soon controlled most of North China.

By 1937, they were ready to strike South, at the heart of the country.

The attack on Shanghai was one of the first civilian bombing raids in history.

It left thousands homeless, thousands dead.

Three months later, Japanese armies were besieging the provisional capital at Nanking.

And when the city fell, the atrocities began.

Trying to terrorize the rest of China into surrender, the Japanese High Command ordered a massacre.

More than two hundred thousand civilians were systematically executed.

The world watched in horror, but no help was given.

On December the seventh, 1941, Japan attacked the American fleet at Pearl Harbor.

There was no warning.

Manchukuo, the Japanese bastion in North China, was still ruled by the puppet Emperor, Pu Yi.

But behind the facade of triumph was a country enslaved.

A country where Japanese experimenting biological warfare were carried out on live human beings.

A country where opium production became the easiest way to finance the war.

Millions of people were deliberately turned into drug addicts.

Nine days after the bomb at Hiroshima, on August the fifteenth, 1945, Emperor Hirohito announced the surrender of Japan.

It was the first time his voice had ever been heard on radio.

You must get to Tokyo, Your Majesty.

You must surrender to the Americans, not the Russians.

The communists will kill everyone!

Your excellence have reached Habi.

We must leave at once.

There is no room in the plane.

No trucks!

The Empress has returned.

Your Majesty, please.

The Empress must not know you have seen her like that.

Your Majesty!

Hurry! There is no room on the plane, Your Majesty!

The women are looking beat. We must hurry!

Your Majesty! Your Majesty is leaving now!


The Russians!

Perhaps you think we are here to teach men to lie in a new way.

Why did you sign every accusation made against you?

I didn't stop you from killing yourself to see you like this.

Someone who signs anything to please his enemies, to please me!

You knew about a lot of things in Manchukuo, even the secret agreements.

But you couldn't possibly have known about the Japanese biological warfare experiments in Harbin!

Could you? So why did you sign these papers?

I was responsible for everything.

You are responsible for what you do!

All your life you thought you were better than everyone else.

Now you think you're the worst of all!

Why can you not leave me alone?

You saved my life to make me a puppet in your own play.

You saved me because I am useful to you.

Is that so terrible, to be useful?

Aisin-Gioro Pu Yi!

By order of the Supreme People's Court, the war criminal, Aisin-Gioro Pu Yi, male, fifty-three years old, of the Manchu nationality, and from Peking, has now served ten years detention!

As a result of remolding through labor and ideological education during his captivity, he has shown that he has genuinely reformed!

In accordance with clause one of the Special Pardon Order, he is therefore to be released!

You see, I will end up living in prison longer than you.

The Red Guards!

They are so young.

It is dangerous.

Look, over there, Pu Chieh, look!

It is the governor of our prison!

It cannot be! It is! I'm sure it is!

Be careful! Come back!

Comrade, this must be a mistake! I know this man! He is a good man.

Who are you? I am a gardener.

Join us, comrade, or buzz off!

But what has he done? He has been accused.

Accused of what? - Imperialismania! Reactionary elements! Traitor to country!

Confess your crimes! I have nothing to confess.

Kowtow to Chairman Mao!

Confess your crimes! I have nothing to confess.


Confess your crimes! Wait!

He's a teacher! He is a good teacher!

You! Get out of here! You can't do this to him!

Move! You want to be him?

You are wrong! He is a good teacher!

Decision of reactionary element! Decision of reactionary element!

Stop! You are not allowed in there!

Who are you? - I live here! I'm the son of the guardian!

Ah, well, I used to live here, too.

That is where I sat.

Who are you?

I was the Emperor of China.

Prove it!

This is the Hall of Supreme Harmony where the Emperors were crowned.

The last Emperor to be crowned here was Aisin-Gioro Pu Yi.

He was three years old. He died in 1967.