The Sacrifice (2020 film)

The Sacrifice (Chinese: 金刚川) is a 2020 Chinese anthology war drama film directed by Guan Hu, Frant Gwo, and Lu Yang, and starring Zhang Yi, Wu Jing, Li Jiuxiao, Vision Wei, and Deng Chao.[5] The film depicts the Korean War from three perspectives and segments, each directed by a different director.

The Sacrifice
The Sacrifice (2020 film) poster.jpg
MandarinJīngāng Chuān
LiterallyGeumgang River
Directed byGuan Hu
Frant Gwo
Lu Yang
Written byGuan Hu
Produced byFu Ruoqing
Liang Jing
Guan Hu
StarringZhang Yi
Wu Jing
Li Jiuxiao
Vision Wei
Deng Chao
CinematographyGao Weizhe
Han Qiming
Michael Yoo
Luo Pan
Edited byLu Di
Ye Xiaochang
He Yongyi
Music byRoc Chen (阿鲲)
Andrew Kawczynski
China Film Co., Ltd.
Seven Impressions Film and Television Media (Haikou) Ltd.
Frant Gwo Culture Media (Beijing) Ltd.
Beijing Free Ku Jing Cinema Ltd.
Huaxia Film Distribution
Huayi Brothers Media Corporation
Distributed byChina Film Co., Ltd. (Mainland China)
Emperor Motion Pictures (Hong Kong)
Release date
  • 23 October 2020 (2020-10-23) (Mainland China)
  • 19 November 2020 (2020-11-19) (Hong Kong)
Running time
122 minutes[1]
Nanchang dialect[2][3]
Box officeUS$173.8 million[4] (1.12 billion RMB[1])

The film is noted for having done its production in less than two months. Filming started for the film in August 2020 and wrapped on September 20, 2020. The film was originally scheduled to be screened on 25 October 2020, but the date was moved up to 23 October. The tagline on the promotional poster is "National defense brooks no delay" (保家卫国刻不容缓).


In 1953, the Korean War is reaching its final stage. The People's Volunteer Army is launching its last large-scale campaign, the Jincheng Campaign, in Kumsong. In order to arrive at the designated time and bring more firepower to the front lines in Kumsong, the soldiers of the People's Volunteer Army, short of supplies and with a huge disparity in equipment, withstand continuous indiscriminate bombing from enemy planes. They sacrifice their flesh and blood to repair a wooden bridge amidst the flames of war. A little-known chapter of history slowly unfolds above the surging Geumgang River, from which the film takes its Chinese-language title.

The events of the film are presented in three main segments from three perspectives: "Soldiers", "Adversaries", and "Gunners". These are followed by a final segment, "Bridge".[6]


  • Zhang Yi as second lieutenant Zhang Fei (张飞排长) who assumed command of his company after Guan's smoking demotion and successfully hit Hill from the hidden artillery battery after Guan's sacrifice. He subsequently engaged in a shooting duel with Hill at great costs of his men and his own left arm and leg. Ultimately, he shot Hill down by evoking the spirit of the synonymous Zhang Fei at the Battle of Changban.
  • Deng Chao as lieutenant of the 8th company Gao Fulai (高福来连长) whose company was ordered to be the last to cross the river. He would have to support the engineering company and help fix the bridge. His lower body was bombed to pieces.
  • Li Jiuxiao as third squad sergeant Liu Hao (刘浩班长) under Gao's command. He was eager to win a combat medal instead of fixing the bridge.
  • Vision Wei as lieutenant Yan Rui (闫瑞连长) of the engineering company, responsible for fixing the bridge.
  • Oho Ou as lieutenant for 7th company (七连长) who wanted to cross the bridge to meet up with the main force.
  • Richard Dubintsov as U.S. Air Force bomber young pilot Colin who was shot down by Chinese AA-gun.
  • Vladimir Ershov (Russian actor) as U.S. Air Force bomber pilot Hill Andrew (codename "Warthog"). He recognized without the bridge, it's the PVA's hell, but the situation would be reversed if the bridge stood. He tried to avenge Colin's death and killed Guan. His bomber also took out Zhang's left arm and leg, but he was eventually killed midair by Zhang in their third encounter, while nearing a thunderbird.
  • Viktor Kulikov (Russian actor) as U.S. Air Force bomber pilot Smith who flew with Warthog by always maintaining his high altitude, citing his cousin at the United States Navy that a ceasefire negotiation would soon take place. After witnessing a large number of Katyusha rockets firing at the U.S. artillery base, he repeatedly said he didn't want to die and just wanted to leave the scene. After the two Chinese AA-flaks were down, he didn't shoot or bomb at the human bridge, while his backup support did. He survived to old age and also gave monologue during the film.


The project was officially greenlit in August 2020. Reports indicated that Wu Jing had begun filming in Dandong, Liaoning.[7][8]

It is noteworthy that filming started in early August and the final touches were officially applied on 20 September, meaning that the movie was filmed in less than two months. Online commentators expressed concern that the tight production schedule might affect the final quality of the film,[9] but also pointed out that based on precedents such as The Mission and Young and Dangerous, the film might still be worth looking forward to.[10]


The film's release date was set for 23 October 2020,[11] including 2D, IMAX, CGS, CINITY, and 4DX versions. Its release coincided with a week of official celebrations commemorating the 70th anniversary of China's participation in the Korean War.[12][13]

The film grossed $173.8 million.[4] It was the box office number-one film in China for weeks 42–45 of 2020.


Audience reactions were positive. On the day of the film's release, its average rating out of 10 was 9.4 on Maoyan and 9.5 on Taopiaopiao.[12]

Critics noted the film's originality, especially its polyphonic storytelling and its focus on the heroic role of ordinary soldiers.[14][15][16]

Lu Fang of the Qianjiang Evening News wrote that although some viewers felt the movie's three-part structure made it repetitive, this was actually its most creative aspect. Lu praised the film's cinematography and acting, especially Zhang Yi's performance as gunner Zhang Fei, and said the third segment "Gunners" was thrilling.[14]

American film critic Derek Elley wrote that the film was offbeat and original.[6]

Critics felt that the second part of the film ("Adversaries"), focused on American pilots, was its weakest, with Derek Elley calling it "cliched and corny" and the Qianjiang Evening News describing the segment as too long and the acting overexaggerated.[6][14]


At the 12th Macau International Movie Festival, Zhang Yi won the Golden Lotus Award for Best Actor and Guan Hu won the Golden Lotus Award for Best Writing for The Sacrifice.[17][18][19]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b "金刚川". 貓眼電影. Retrieved 25 October 2020.
  2. ^ "邓超首次在《金刚川》中把"南昌话"搬上大银幕,值得玩味_腾讯新闻". Retrieved 1 January 2021.
  3. ^ "《金刚川》邓超的南昌话火了 邓超的哪句方言是即兴创作?". (in Chinese). Retrieved 1 January 2021.
  4. ^ a b "Jin gang chuan (2020) - Financial Information". The Numbers.
  5. ^ "金刚川演职员". (in Chinese). Retrieved 13 October 2020.
  6. ^ a b c Elley, Derek. "Review: The Sacrifice (2020)". Retrieved 30 December 2020.
  7. ^ "管虎新作《金刚川》立项 主演吴京已赴辽宁拍摄". 1905电影网 (in Chinese). 7 August 2020. Retrieved 27 September 2020.
  8. ^ "管虎抗美援朝题材电影《金刚川》立项 港媒称吴京将主演". 观察者网 (in Chinese). 7 August 2020. Retrieved 27 September 2020.
  9. ^ "拍摄到上映仅两个月,吴京新片《金刚川》定档国庆后,你期待吗?". 搜狐 (in Chinese). 25 September 2020. Retrieved 27 September 2020.
  10. ^ "《金刚川》拍摄两个月就要上映,管虎,你真的知道你在干什么么?". 搜狐 (in Chinese). 27 September 2020. Retrieved 12 October 2020.
  11. ^ "张译吴京邓超"金刚川"定档10月25日 管虎郭帆等共同执导 致敬英雄志愿军". 时光网. 24 September 2020. Retrieved 27 September 2020.
  12. ^ a b Frater, Patrick (23 October 2020). "Chinese War Film 'Sacrifice' Makes $11 Million Start in Cinemas". Variety. Retrieved 30 December 2020.
  13. ^ Shaw, Tristan (18 December 2020). "China's top blockbusters of 2020". SupChina. Retrieved 30 December 2020.
  14. ^ a b c "《金刚川》同一个故事讲三遍?就是这样才好看!". 钱江晚报. 25 October 2020. Retrieved 1 January 2021.
  15. ^ 饶曙光 (29 October 2020). "《金刚川》:英雄风骨不灭,民族气节弥坚 | 名家_电影号图文_电影网". 人民日报. Retrieved 1 January 2021.
  16. ^ 孙薇; 张慧瑜 (6 November 2020). "《金刚川》:新时代主旋律电影的一份满意答卷 | 评论_电影号图文_电影网". 人民日报. Retrieved 1 January 2021.
  17. ^ "【金蓮盛放,星耀澳門】2020第12屆澳門國際電影節、第11屆澳門國際電視節、第10屆澳門國際微電影節·獲獎名單". Macau International Movie Festival (in Chinese). Retrieved 1 January 2021.
  18. ^ "张译钟楚曦分获澳门国际电影节最佳男女主角". Ifeng (in Chinese). 30 December 2020. Retrieved 1 January 2021.
  19. ^ "强视传媒出品电视剧《如果岁月可回头》斩获金莲花最佳电视剧大奖-千龙网·中国首都网" (in Chinese). 31 December 2020. Retrieved 1 January 2021.

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