Early Christian Bale

In 1987, Steven Spielberg made an excellent movie called Empire of the Sun, about a young British boy who lives with his wealthy parents in Shanghai. His privileged childhood abruptly turns to chaos when the Japanese army occupies Shanghai. A terrific movie with a brilliant young actor in the starring role.

Turns out that boy was a young Christian Bale. This was 18 years before Batman Begins. Here’s the trailer.

  • lucascott

    I thought everyone knew that history. It was talked about a lot when Batman Begins came out. How after this, Bale’s handlers wanted to go the whole big film route and he had basically an anxiety attack meltdown with all the press etc to the point that after Newsies he almost totally quit acting but ended up coming back and going for indie stuff even if it didn’t make him lots of money or such. Only agreed to do Batman because it was Nolan and he liked the more cerebral take on the story.

  • Matthew Schultz

    Empire of the Sun was fantastic. “I can’t remember their faces!”


    Can’t get any better the John Williams scores in the 80’s either.

  • Moeskido

    Hell of a movie and a hell of a book that it was based upon.

  • Filip Brocke

    Great and youth defining movie, the poster was decorating my teenager room for years – still love it.

  • Ah yes. Fry’s Electronics in Palo Alto played this trailer on a loop in their home theatre section. I don’t think I ever saw the movie… but I did buy a Bose home theatre from Fry’s! Now to see if the movie is on Netflix! Nope, it’s not, but this looks interesting: http://movies.netflix.com/WiMovie/The_Flowers_of_War/70221406?trkid=7203170

  • I watched that movie as a kid but it still made a lasting impression. Great movie, but knowing the boy is Christian Bale instantly changed my impression of the boy. Even in this trailer, some of his expressions makes me think of him in The Fighter.